Intu to Purchase Westfield Malls for $1.4 Billion
Intu Properties Plc, the U.K.'s largest shopping mall operator, has purchased three shopping centers from Westfield Group for £867.8 million ($1.4 billion).
Th retail company will acquire the 230,000-square-foot Sprucefield retail park in Northern Ireland and the 1.3 million-square-foot Westfield Derby, as well as a 50 percent stake in the 1.4 million-square-foot Westfield Merry Hill shopping center located 10 miles from Birmingham, according to a company statement.
London-based Intu will finance the acquisition with £423.8 million in new debt facilities as well as approximately £500 million from a share sale.
The deal "is a rare and attractive opportunity to acquire a further two prime shopping centers in line with our strategy to focus on the U.K.'s largest and most successful destinations," Intu chief executive David Fischel said in the statement.
Investors interest is growing for the U.K.'s commercial real estate. Commercial property values increased for the 10th straight month in February, according to data from Investment Property Databank Ltd.
Westfield will receive £600 million from the sale, in line with the book value, the company said in a statement.
Through a joint venture with Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Intu purchased Parque Principado Shopping Centre
in northern Spain for €162 million ($219.7 million) last October.