Magnusson is reporting that it advised A-R-A Retail Centers on the previously-reported sale of 28 shopping centers to Chariot Top Group BV, which closed on January 4, 2018.
As reported by CEE Legal Matters on December 27, 2017, Linklaters advised Chariot Top Group – a company incorporated in the Netherlands, co-managed by Griffin Real Estate – on the acquisition of a portfolio of 28 retail properties from A-R-A, which is owned by a consortium of Ares Management L.P., AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets, and Apollo Rida. The value of the deal is around EUR 1 billion. Linklaters also then subsequently sold 12 of the properties from this portfolio to Echo Polska Properties (which was represented by Dentons), which, when the deal is completed, will become the largest retail property owner in the region.
Under the agreement with A-R-A Retail Centers, Chariot Top Group acquires a portfolio of 28 real estate assets consisting of nine M1 shopping centers, twelve hypermarkets, four power parks, and three stand-alone DIY stores. The portfolio has a total GLA of about 704,000 square meters. The acquisition was partially financed with approximately 635 million bank debt.
"The volume of this transaction once again shows the high attractiveness of Poland and its economy," commented Rafal Nowicki of Apollo Rida. “The outstanding fundamentals, the stability and the size make Poland the leading economy in the CEE region, while its real estate market still offers high yields and growth potential."
Magnusson Warsaw advised an Apollo-Rida and Ares Management consortium on the acquisition of the entire 28-strong property portfolio in 2003-2004, and continued to advise on matters related to the portfolio's management – including financing, refinancing, leasing and extension – through this sale. The firm's team was led by Senior Partner Andrzej Tokaj and included, among others, Partner Katarzyna Sawa-Rybaczek, Senior Associate Dawid Demianiuk, and Associate Zuzanna Wencel-Czuryszkiewicz.
Editor's Note: As reported here, Linklaters also advised Chariot Top Group BV on financing for the deal received from HSBC, with Dentons advising the bank.