GLOBAL - Private equity giant Blackstone has agreed to acquire Valad Property Group in a deal valuing the Australian business at AUD207m (€149m).

The deal will see Blackstone purchase all the stapled securities in Valad for AUD1.80 per stapled security, representing a premium of more than 50% over the closing price of 27 April.

Trevor Gerber, chairman of Valad, said: "The Valad board is focused on maximising value for Valad security holders. The transaction represents a substantial premium to the current Valad security price."

He added: "The Valad board has been considering a range of strategic options to maximise security holder value, including maintaining the status quo, a recapitalisation via an equity raising, a series of select asset sales and an orderly wind up.

"After receipt and assessment of the Blackstone proposal, the Valad board considers that it provides the most certain value proposition for all Valad security holders."

Clem Salwin, acting chief executive at Valad, said: "Valad's executive team has been committed this year to a renewed focus on our core competencies and activities.

"We have been implementing strategies to strengthen and simplify our business and to improve transparency for all our stakeholders."

The buyout requires the approval of Valad security holders, and an investor meeting is likely to be held in early July.

It is the second deal between Blackstone and a troubled Australian real estate company this year after the former paid $9.4bn (€6.3bn) to Centro Properties for a large portfolio of US shopping centres in March.

It also comes soon after a failed management buyout of Valad's European fund management business by managing director Peter Hurley, who has since left, and European chief executive Martyn McCarthy.