10/12/2014 - 18:21

Fremantle Woolstores shops sold for $40m

10/12/2014 - 18:21

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A private investor has snapped up Fremantle’s Woolstores Shopping Centre for $40 million, in a deal brokered by commercial agency JLL.

JLL sold the centre, which is anchor-tenanted by Coles, on behalf of owner EG Funds Management, while the sale price represented a passing initial yield of 6.47 per cent.

A development application to build a significant apartment project at the centre was also lodged earlier this year by EG, with a staged construction plan flagging around 500 dwellings.

An artist's impression of the Woolstores apartments plan.

JLL Australian head of retail investments Simon Rooney said neighbourhood shopping centres were among the most attractive commercial property assets on the market.

“Shopping centres with high grocery and food retailing exposure have continued to perform well,” Mr Rooney said.

“Food spending has grown by 4.3 per cent per annum over the past five years, significantly faster than the 3.5 per cent per annum for total retail.

“The defensive characteristics of neighbourhood centres are very attractive to real estate investors, especially with the added strength of a Coles lease covenant.”

Mr Rooney said the total value of neighbourhood shopping centre transactions in 2014 across the nation was $1.1 billion, while he expected that to exceed $1.3 billion by the end of the year.

“This reflects the heavy focus on the non-discretionary based neighbourhood sector at present, with robust demand for assets from a widening range of institutional and private investors,” he said.

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