29/08/2012 - 10:47

Logistics lifting industrial land market

29/08/2012 - 10:47

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Logistics lifting industrial land market
LOGISTICS: The Linfox facility in Hazelmere was established to support major projects in the Pilbara. Photo: Linfox

FRESH from the opening of a $70 million logistics base in Hazelmere, private Australian company Linfox is on the lookout for more land to support its growth.

Linfox’s 27,000 square metre facility is the latest in a string of major logistics bases that have been opened in Perth in recent years, helping to keep the industrial land market in a buoyant state.

Like many other industrial developments, the Linfox facility has been established to service the resource sector.

Specifically, it has been established to support projects in the Pilbara being undertaken by iron ore miners BHP Billiton and Fortescue Metals Group.

A Linfox spokesman said the company was already evaluating a site north of Perth for its next logistics base.

Linfox has invested about $200 million in Western Australia in the past year, primarily on its new depot and 150 new road trains.

The spokesman said the company was looking to invest the same amount over the next two years, both in Perth and in depots across the state to support its long distance trucking operation.

The Linfox depot is at Goodman Group’s Stockyards industrial estate in Hazelmere, where Toll IPC opened a 16,000sqm logistics facility in 2010 and Coca Cola Amatil opened a 41,000sqm distribution centre last year.

Completion of the Linfox depot means the Stockyards estate is fully leased.

It is Perth’s largest freehold industrial estate held under one title, across 95,000sqm.

Stockyards is also the first large-scale master planned industrial estate undertaken by an institutional investor in Perth.

Other logistics companies to have made large investments in Perth in the past two years include Centurion Transport, which counts Rio Tinto among its major clients, and TNT.

Collectively, Toll IPEC, Centurion and Toll invested $120 million on their new logistics bases.

Another indication of the industrial land market’s strength was a revaluation of Aspen Group’s Spearwood industrial estate.  The land was revalued to $73 million in June 2012, up 25.9 per cent from its previous book value.

This followed a leasing deal with Leighton Contractors, which leased 62,014sqm of warehouse and 75,658sqm of hardstand for a term of two and a half years.

The tenant on the neighbouring land renewed its lease for 39,485sqm of warehouse space and 12,445sqm of hardstand, for a one-year term.

Loss-making printing group PMP will test the resilience of the industrial land market, after this week appointing CBRE to handle to the sale and leaseback of four properties across the country.

The four properties have a net lettable area of just over 100,000sqm. 

Based on valuations received, PMP said it expects to realise cash proceeds of at least $75 million.

The largest properties are in Sydney and Melbourne.

In Perth, PMP is offering an office warehouse in Bibra Lake, with an 8,676sqm facility situated on a 24,470sqm site.

The PMP assets will be sold individually or in one line on leasebacks ranging from five to 12 years, with the average weighted lease expiry being circa nine years.

Meanwhile, Linfox has highlighted the technical sophistication of its new depot, which includes a state-of-the-art master control centre that monitors operations across WA in real-time.

“Hazelmere bristles with high tech systems that guarantee accurate management of a vast range of essential needs for remote resource projects,” Linfox chairman Peter Fox said.

“The centre’s master control room allows our team to monitor and manage our resources warehouse and transport operations throughout Western Australia.” 

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