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The week in global real estate - 16 December 2020

The week in global real estate  16 December 2020

A weekly update of the biggest real estate news from around the globe.

Institutional investors

  • Blackstone Group has teamed with Singaporean Soilbuild Group to privatise their Business Space REIT in a deal worth US$525M. The REIT owns 13 properties including business parks in Singapore. It had been struggling due to the impact of the pandemic. More info here.
  • The Kenyan Capital Markets Authority has approved the issuance of a REIT by student hostel developer Acorn to fund development in the country. A European fund has agreed to take a large stake in the REIT. More info here.
  • Swedish real estate firm SBB has withdrawn a US$3.4B bid for Norwegian property investor Entra after they have reported a higher valuation for their assets. Entra’s property portfolio value increased by 8% since it reported its third-quarter results in October. More info here.

Office

  • Amazon has pre-leased part of Charter Hall's $750M office development at 555 Collins Street in Melbourne. Amazon will lease the larger of two office buildings in the development. More info here.
  • Singapore based CapiaLand has purchased three suburban office buildings from AMP Capital in Sydney’s Macquarie Park for $289M. The location is expected to benefit from the Sydney Metro line which will open in 2024. More info here.
  • Plans have been submitted for a $70M commercial development in Geelong comprising two 13-storey office towers. The plans have been developed in response to the Geelong Fast Rail project which will start in 2023. More info here.
  • A credit card company in Chicago has leased a former Target store for use a call-centre space. The 11,800 sqm space could accommodate up to 1,000 people. More info here.
  • Software company Salesforce plans to consolidate its offices and sublease space in San Fransisco. The move is driven by remote working trends. The company’s headquarters, Salesforce Tower, is not impacted. More info here.
  • Apple employees are unlikely to return to the offices before June 2021. The company has historically had an office-centric culture but has had success with working remotely. More info here.
  • Oracle is moving its headquarters from Silicon Valley to Austin, Texas after implementing a more flexible remote working policy. Many employees can now choose their office location or continue to work remotely. More info here.
  • The UK government has extended its ban on commercial property evictions until the end of March 2021. More info here.
  • Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority has certified Keppel Bay Tower as Green Mark Platinum. It is the first building in the country to receive this certification which classes the building as a zero-energy building. More info here.

Retail

  • An Indianapolis office building owner is suing CVS after they stopped paying rent due to damage during riots in May. The CVS store had been open in the location since 1982 but had been closed since with no plans to reopen. More info here.
  • The National Restaurant Association estimates that in the past three months 110,000 restaurants in the US have closed permanently or on a long-term basis due to the pandemic. This represents 17% of all restaurants in the USA. More info here.
  • Indoor dining will be banned again in New York City to help control the pandemic. The rest of New York will also have capacity controls. More info here.

Hotel and tourism

  • Airbnb has raised US$3.5B in its IPO this week giving the company a valuation above US$100B. Airbnb has struggled with the impact of the pandemic on tourism and reported a US$700M loss in the first nine months of 2020. More info here.
  • Australia's first hotel within a stadium has opened in Adelaide. The Oval Hotel has 138-rooms wrapped around the exterior facade of a stadium. More info here.
  • Pinetrees Lodge on Australia’s Lord Howe Island is the country’s first full-service hotel to be certified carbon neutral. $5M was spent in renovations to reduce its carbon footprint. The renovation has achieved a 30% reduction in electricity and water consumption. More info here.
  • A $60M boutique resort is being planned by Tim Gurner in Port Douglas. It will feature 16 apartments and 18 rooms. The resort is planned near the location of another $300M marina resort development. More info here.
  • Oxford Capital Group has paid US$115M for five hotels in the San Francisco area, including two in Silicon Valley. The group sees long term potential in the sector despite the pandemic. More info here.

Housing

  • Australia’s National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation has projected the demand for new housing will drop by 290,000 dwellings over the next five years due to constraints on migration. They expect the biggest impact to be in the apartment and rental sectors. More info here.
  • A Sydney developer has received planning approval for a 35-storey residential tower adjacent to Westfield Parramatta. The 118m tower will have 27 one-bedroom, 73 two-bedroom apartments, and 4 three-bedroom apartments. More info here.
  • Cromwell Property Group has received approval for a $350M mixed-use development at 700 Collins Street in Melbourne. The 55-storey tower will include 265 build-to-rent apartments. More info here.

Related Experts

Chris Farhi

Director | Strategic Advisory

Auckland CBD

Chris is a Director within the Strategic Advisory team. The team helps you with your big property decisions and complex transactions.

Chris' advisory work focuses on:

  • Decision making processes (eg property strategy, business cases, feasibilities, etc)
  • Tenant representation for large lease transactions (office,  industrial and specialist-use)
  • Multi-site networks (eg consolidation strategies, optimisation, etc)

Chris’ background in brief:

  • Property strategy advisor for some of New Zealand’s most successful private sector, public sector and non-for-profit organisations.
  • Tenant representative (tenant-paid lease negotiator) for organisations ranging from small-to-medium enterprises through to major listed companies and government agencies.
  • Specialist skills in commercial leasing, financial analysis and market research.
  • Part-time lecturer at the University of Auckland Business School and commercial leasing trainer for the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Chris’ qualifications include Honours degrees in both Civil Engineering and Property from the University of Auckland, and a Master of Philosophy from the University of Cambridge, UK. He is a Chartered Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Outside of work, Chris is a combat engineer in the NZ Army Reserve and a keen baker.

View Expert

William Silk

Analyst | Stategic Advisory

Auckland CBD

William joined the Strategic Advisory team as an Analyst  in the Auckland CBD office in 2019, after completing studies at The University of Auckland. 

Specialising in reseasrch, reporting and analysis to support strategic commercial proprety decision making. 

View Expert