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Orco buys property for $890 mln in Prague

The company was the highest bidder for the plot in the Bubny district, offering 1.1 billion koruna, the state railway agency selling the property said in an e-mailed statement last Friday. Orco Property Group won in the tender for a plot of 27 hectares in Prague 7 – Bubny district, originally announced by Správa železniční dopravní cesty (SŽDC) and already signed the contract. The plot, which has stood vacant and neglected for the last 20 years, is the only area of such a type and size in the Prague City Centre. As such, one of Orco’s main goals is the rejuvenation and revitalisation of the prime Prague 7 – Bubny district. Estimated investment into this project stands at 20 billion krouna. After nearly 15 years of extraordinary growth and success, Orco Property Group is poised for an even greater presence in the Central and Eastern European Regions. Orco said earlier it plans to build apartments, a shopping center, offices and an area for leisure activities over the next 10 to 15 years on the site. The state rail agency wanted to sell the property for at least 520 million koruna. Luxembourg-based Orco has focused on central Europe since it entered the region in 1991 to benefit from rising property prices. Orco also has developments in Budapest, Moscow, Berlin, Warsaw and Bratislava as well as on Hvar Island in Croatia. The company's shares fell 2.3% to 2,323 koruna in Prague last Friday. Property Group operates in a number of countries including, mainly, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Russia, Croatia, Germany and Slovakia. Orco Property Group is continually analysing investment into new territories. Orco Property Group is also sponsor and manager of the Endurance Real Estate Fund For Central Europe, a Luxembourg–regulated, closed–end fund whose total subscribed capital represents EUR 142 million, and which currently manages assets of EUR 110 million. Estimated value of the Fund’s portfolio is ca. EUR 500 million. The Endurance Fund is dedicated to institutional investors and focuses on acquisitions in Central European real estate markets. (Bloomberg,