Metro Properties Concludes CEE Sale-and-leaseback Deal
Metro Properties, the real estate arm of Metro AG, has sold the real estate of 11 Cash & Carry stores in Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic in a sale-and-leaseback transaction.
The portfolio has been acquired by FLE GmbH, Vienna, a subsidiary of the French LFPI Group, investing on behalf of an AIF regulated fund. The transaction was finalised in August with a total investment volume exceeding EUR 250 million.
Metro and Makro Cash & Carry will continue to operate all the wholesale locations on the basis of long-term lease contracts. The transaction has been described as the largest deal in Central Europe to date in 2019, and one of largest sale and leaseback transactions in Europe.
The portfolio consists of five Makro Cash & Carry stores in Poland (Warsaw, Wroclaw, Krakow and Lublin), three Metro Cash & Carry properties in Budapest, and three Makro Cash & Carry shops in Prague. Metro Properties has retained the ownership of several adjacent plots in Poland and the Czech Republic in order to develop mixed-use projects.
For Hungary, Metro Properties was advised by Colliers Hungary, represented by Luke Dawson, head of CEE capital markets and Bence Vécsey, head of investment at Colliers International Hungary.
“With the uniqueness and size of these portfolios it was important for us to not only understand the real estate but, more importantly, the operating business of Metro,” comments Vécsey.
“This transaction required facilitating a long-term partnership that goes beyond this initial transaction. We are proud to have played a part in bringing these two partners together,” he adds.
A sale-and-leaseback transaction can be seen as a win-win situation for both partners in a deal as it frees up finance for the tenant and vendor, who is able to concentrate on its core business, while at the same time the purchaser acquires a property with a long-term tenant with property management already in place.
Several international investors who specialise in sale-and-leaseback deals have concluded deals in Hungary and CEE or are looking at the possibilities in the market.
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