GERMANY - An unnamed North American institutional investor has bought 11 German shopping centres through international private equity consultancy MGPA.

The portfolio - with 75,000 square meters of rentable space - was bought for an undisclosed sum for the unnamed investor.

MGPA will also take over management of the portfolio.

The consultancy noted that more than half of the rental income would derive from leading German food chains like Edeka, Rewe, Penny and Aldi.

The company - which specialises in management-intensive shopping centre portfolios as opposed to single assets - sees "development potential" in project development, re-letting and renovations.

In total, this is the third portfolio of shopping centres MGPA has bought in Germany.

In other news, positive sentiment in the German market - as reflected in the Deutsche-Hypo-Index in January - was "short-lived", the company said.

In February, the index - based on more than 1,000 interviews with German industry representatives - fell by 6.6%.

But Andreas Pohl, board member at Deutsche Hypo, pointed out that, while traditional institutional investment sectors including office and retail properties were seen more negatively, German residential property was again on the "positive side".

"This is the classic pattern, which will most likely remain stable in the coming months - at least as long as the European financial, economic and debt crisis is not showing any major signs of recovery," he said.

Meanwhile, Invesco Real Estate (IRE) and Hannover Leasing announced the successful winding up of a US real estate fund set up in 2002 for German institutional investors.

With the sale of the last property in the fund - an office building in New York used by the Federal Reserve Bank and acquired for $207.5m (€157m) - the fund can be would up after 10 years.

IRE and Hannover said the realised appreciation for the last New York property was around 56%.

Last December, the only other property in the portfolio, a building in New Jersey, was sold for $285m.

Over the past decade, the fund had returned around 12.5% annually in US dollar terms.

Lastly, Warburg-Henderson subsidiary IntReal International Real Estate Kapitalanlagegesellschaft announced an increase in AUM to around €5bn, mainly through a €4bn management service agreement signed with the Warburg-Henderson KAG last April.

Michael Schneider, managing director at IntReal, said interest from external asset managers without KAG platforms, as well as from institutional investors, remained high.

IntReal managing director Klaus Hoffmann added: "Mainly because of the increased professionalisation, but also because of the increasing regulation of the market, the Spezialfonds currently is the clear favourite of institutional investors."

In its second year of operations, the first service-KAG specialising in real estate was able to set up two further third-party Spezialfonds, bringing the total number to seven.

It also almost doubled its total investment volume to €840m with the purchase of 37 properties for these Spezialfonds.

For 2012, IntReal already has around €1bn in equity commitments from the existing IntReal partner funds.

Five additional real estate Spezialfonds will be launched this year, and another three are in preparation.