FINLAND - GIC, the €145bn Singapore sovereign wealth fund, has acquired 40% of one of Finland's largest shopping centres for €131.6m.

Local real estate firm Citycon, which acquired Helsinki's high-end Iso Omena in September, will retain the other 60%.

Kaisa Vuorio, vice-president of Finnish operations at Citycon, said: "It was a flagship asset in our Finnish portfolio and a big single investment, which meant gearing investment risk towards a single property.

"It isn't a risky asset but the partnership with GIC allows us to minimise the risk. We'll still own 60% and we still operate the centre, so we'll get the portfolio effects."

In addition to hedging risk, she said the firm had decided to seek an institutional investor as a means of funding the asset's expansion. It has planning permission for a 7,000 extension on the seven-year-old centre.

"GIC is a long-term investor, which was what we were looking for. The shopping centre has extension potential but extending it will take time. GIC has indicated that it will be willing to invest in future."

Vuorio declined to identify other potential investors approached by the firm. Asked whether GIC would be active in managing the centre, she said: "GIC is an owner, so we'll make decisions together. But the daily management will be done by us."