Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund has made a fresh shopping trip to Paris, picking up yet another commercial tower in the City of Light.
GIC, which has over $100 billion in assets under management, announced on Friday that it has acquired PB6, a 40-storey office building in the French capital’s La Defense district.
The Singaporean government institution is paying €530 million ($592.25 million) for the 20-year-old tower, according to French media reports, as Singaporean investors continue to ramp up their purchases of overseas real estate assets. GIC has not released financial details of the acquisition, and Mingtiandi was unable to independently verify the pricing cited in the press accounts.
GIC Buys Tour From French Insurer
At the reported price, GIC is paying the equivalent of €8833.33 per square metre for the 60,000 square metre (646,000 square foot), IM Pei designed-property, which it is purchasing from French insurance giant CNP Assurances.
“The asset presents attractive value-creation opportunities, which GIC expects to capture by investing to enhance the asset and service offering,” the company said in a statement. “This is in line with GIC’s strategy, as a long-term investor, to acquire and add value to quality assets in gateway cities.”
GIC should already be familiar with many of the location advantages of PB6, which is sited on Avenue Jean Moulin around 100 metres away from the Tour Ariane, an office tower on Voie de Sculpteurs which the sovereign wealth fund acquired for €465 million just one year ago.
PB6, which is also known as Tour EDF, is fully leased to French state-controlled utility provider EDF, which originally developed the tower before selling a half stake to French banking group Caisse d’épargne and CNP. The insurance firm later bought out its partners in the project.
Buying into a West Paris Hub
The Singaporean titan pointed out PB6’s location in the heart of La Defense gives the project access to a multi-modal transport hub, as well as numerous amenities. The office tower is only five minutes’ walk from the La Defense train station which offers access to Charles-de-Gaulle airport within 35 minutes.
Following the acquisition, the asset will be managed by London-based BauMont Real Estate Capital, which is also GIC’s partner for management of the Tour Ariane.
In addition to its pair of Paris office towers, GIC also last year led a consortium of investors which paid $7.1 billion to acquire a 55 percent stake in AccorInvest, the investment division of France’s largest hotel operator, AccorHotels.
Singapore Cross-Border Deals Continue
GIC’s purchase of PB6 is the latest milestone in a wave of overseas investments by Singaporean institutions, with Europe continuing to claim a significant slice of that cashflow.
Investors from Singapore spent around $10 billion on overseas real estate in the first half of 2019, according to a recent report by JLL, making the island nation the world’s largest single source of outbound cross-border property capital. Some $1.8 billion of that total went into Europe, the Middle East and Africa, according to the property firm.
That cross-border investment trend has continued in the second half of this year, with Singapore’s Mapletree Investments agreeing earlier this month to invest £96 million (then $117 million) to purchase a pair of student housing assets in the UK.
That student accommodation acquisition came after Stamford Land, a developer from the Lion City, agreed in July to purchase a commercial building in the City of London for £260 million in a joint venture with a private firm controlled by its chairman. Also in July, ARA Asset Management, one of Singapore’s largest privately-held property investment firms, established a fund management joint venture based in London, in order to step up its activities in Europe.