Business Irish

Thursday 2 October 2014

Kennedy Wilson fund plans Irish property splurge

Published 16/05/2014 | 02:30

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Tenants in the properties include Tesco
Tenants in the properties include Tesco

Kennedy Wilson's listed European property fund has predicted a "significant window of investment" in the next 36 months in Ireland, the UK and Spain as the process of deleveraging continues.

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The closed-end fund – Kennedy Wilson Europe Real Estate (KWE) – had cash and cash equivalents of £760.7m (€933m) at the end of March. Those funds will be used to pay for assets including offices, retail units and apartments in Dublin.

KWE also said it is reviewing borrowing options "to finance future pipeline and enhance returns on equity".

The company entered into a conditional agreement last week to acquire the so-called Opera Portfolio for approximately €391.5m. That consists of a 670,000 sq ft portfolio of seven offices and six retail properties across Dublin, as well as one asset in Cork. The tenants in those properties include Tesco, Marks & Spencer and Bank of Ireland.

The purchase price includes €195m in cash and €196.6m for assumed non-recourse debt.

Also last week, the fund entered into a conditional agreement to pay €88.1m to acquire a portfolio of residential and commercial properties in south Dublin. It will pay €30.7m in cash and assume €57.4m of non-recourse debt to buy the Central Park portfolio.

"Our strong pipeline is reflective of the deleveraging process across Ireland, the UK and Spain," director Mary Ricks said last week. "There is expected to be a significant window of investment over the next 12-36 months."

KWE chairperson Charlotte Valeur said the company was "delighted" with the investments it has made to date.

KWE has also acquired two property portfolios in the UK.

Irish Independent

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