KKR, Abacus Property Group and Riverlee Group have sold the World Trade Centre (WTC) in Melbourne to a local developer for AUD267.5m (€191m).

In a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange, Abacus said contracts have been exchanged and that settlement is due before June this year.

New York-headquartered private equity group KKR owned the biggest stake at 52.5%. KKR and Abacus purchased 70% of the property from Riverlee Group in 2014 for AUD120m, valuing the property at AUD172m. 

Abacus said its management team increased occupancy from 90% to 99% and lifted the property’s sustainability rating.

The WTC is in Melbourne’s city centre, on the north bank of the Yarra River, an area designated by the Victorian Government for urban revitalisation.

In a client note, analyst Peter Zuk of  Shaw and Partners, described the transaction as “positive”, and yet another example of Abacus’s ability to identify opportunities and generate returns.

WTC was KKR’s first joint investment with Abacus. In 2015, it partnered Abacus to buy the Oasis Shopping Centre on Queensland’s Gold Coast from Brookfield for AUD104m.

A KKR spokesperson said the firm would not comment beyond the stock-exchange announcement.