GLOBAL - Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and Australia's Future Fund have helped recapitalise a flagship Australia shopping centre fund by agreeing to invest A$750m (€524m) between them.

The move has allowed Colonial First State Global Asset Management, Australia's largest real estate fund manager, to restructure its A$1.1bn Direct Property Investment Fund Retail Sector.

The vehicle is one of three sector-specific funds within Colonial's Direct Property Investment Fund group and will be renamed the CFSGAM Property Retail Partnership.

Under the partnership agreement, CPPIB and the Future Fund have committed A$750m, joining remaining investors in the restructured retail property investment vehicle.

CRP currently comprises a diversified portfolio of predominantly regional and sub-regional shopping centres located across Australia.

The portfolio includes interests in Rockingham and Midland Gate shopping centres in Western Australia, Grand Plaza and Runaway Bay shopping centres in Queensland and the Myer Centre Adelaide.

The portfolio provides 230,000 square metres of retail space, with a combined annual sales turnover in excess of A$1.9bn.

Darren Steinberg, head of property at First Colonial, said the recapitalisation of the fund was undertaken to meet the changing needs of investors, provided existing unit holders with the option of exiting or remaining in the fund.

"An exit strategy for those wishing to reallocate their capital was achieved by securing equity from new investors," he added.

The Direct Property Investment Fund was first established in 1996, offering institutional investors specific investment choices across the retail, industrial and office sectors.