Australia’s Macquarie Group and Canada’s Ivanhoé Cambridge are to jointly acquire Australian logistics development company Logos, giving them access to logistics assets valued at A$2bn (€1.3bn) across Australia and China.
The acquisition price has not been disclosed.
A spokesman for Ivanhoé Cambridge, a subsidiary of the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, told IPE Real Estate: “We cannot confirm details of this ongoing transaction until it is complete and all conditions are met.”
Macquarie did not respond to request for comment.
Macquarie and Ivanhoe Cambridge notified the European Commission on January 29 of their intention to jointly acquire Logos Australia and Logos China. The deal requires clearance from European competition authorities.
Through Macquarie Capital, the Sydney-based investment banking group has held a strategic stake in Logos since 2014.
Macquarie Capital has been advising Logos and raising capital for its ventures in both China and Australia.
In July 2015, Macquarie Capital was adviser to Logos in negotiating a $400m (€357m) commitment from Ivanhoe Cambridge and CBRE Global Investors to develop logistics assets in China.
Logos, founded by joint managing directors Trent Iliffe and John Marsh, in 2010 lifted its profile by working with Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC to assemble an industrial and logistics portfolio in Australia.
The portfolio was sold last year for about A$1.1bn – at a hitherto unheard-of yield of 6.1% for such assets in Australia.
Logos has a significant logistics property development business in Australia, and manages separate mandates from the likes of US private equity group Blackstone, Malaysian institutions and family offices.
The acquisition of Logos will give Macquarie Capital a presence in at least three continents.
Signalling its intention to be a player in the logistics sector globally, MacCap in July 2015 formed a joint venture with the British company Peel Land & Property last July.
The joint venture launched a new UK logistics management platform operating under the Peel Logistics brand, to be seeded with capital from both partners.
When the joint venture was announced, the partners said Peel Logistics would be seeking institutional capital investment to support future growth, and that its ambition was to reach £1bn (€1.3bn) in managed assets.
Macquarie’s latest move into industrial property is reminiscent of an earlier foray into the sector in 2002. It was backed then by Greg Goodman and his Goodman Group under the Macquarie Goodman Industrial REIT banner.
As the listed REIT grew in size in subsequent years, Macquarie gradually sold down its interest and, in August 2006, Macquarie disposed of its residential holding of 7.7 per cent for A$733m.
Industry sources in Australia say the Macquarie Group is moving back into real estate aggressively in Australia – some five years or so after virtually walking away in the wake of the global financial crisis.
At a presentation to investors and analysts in Sydney on Thursday, the group said it has AUD9bn available for deployment in real estate, infrastructure, agriculture and energy.
Macquarie’s head of its Europe, Middle East and Africa Business, David Fass, said the group was finding some very interesting opportunities in Central and Eastern Europe.
“We are working on a couple of very significant transactions at the moment in Slovenia and Slovakia,” Fass said.
Ivanhoé Cambridge has substantial industrial holdings within its C$42bn (€27.3bn) real estate portfolio in Europe and North America.