Ivanhoé Cambridge, the property subsidiary of Canada’s Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, has sold two properties to Gecina and simultaneously boosted its interest in the French REIT.
The Canadian firm said it had signed a deal to sell two Paris office properties to Gecina for €1.24bn, adding 122,200sqm of office space to Gecina’s portfolio.
The properties are Tours T1 and B in the La Défense business district, which combined have 88,600sqm of space. The towers are the world headquarters of ENGIE Group, formerly GDF SUEZ.
The second property included in the sale is 75 Avenue de la Grande Armée in central Paris, which has 33,600m2 of space and is the headquarters of PSA Group.
As part of the deal, Ivanhoé Cambridge has increased its stake in a vehicle formed to hold shares in Gecina, set up in conjunction with Blackstone.
Blackstone manages the ‘concert’, which now owns 29.8% of the Paris REIT.
This latest deal will increase Ivanhoé Cambridge’s indirect ownership of Gecina to about 23% from 21%.
Ivanhoé Cambridge and Blackstone have been gradually increasing their ownership of Gecina in recent years, by acquiring debt secured on Gecina’s capital and also by buying shares from third parties.
However after a deal last July, they said the concert had no intention of holding 30% or more of Gecina’s share capital and voting rights.
Daniel Fournier, chairman and chief executive of Ivanhoé Cambridge, said: “The increase of our economic participation in the investment of the concert with Blackstone to approximately 23% of Gecina’s share capital, combined with the sale of our assets to Gecina, demonstrates our support for the strategy of this leader in the office building sector in the Paris region.”