Unipension has sold 31 properties as part of the implementation of the new real estate strategy it announced a year ago.
In a news bulletin from its board of directors, the Danish pensions administrator said: “The process of selling the Danish properties is going better than expected, as far as both the number of sales and the sales prices achieved are concerned.”
Unipension has now sold 31 properties for DKK1.79bn (€240m), it said, adding that the sales prices matched valuations.
The company, which manages the Architects’ Pension Fund (AP), MP Pension (MP) and the Pension Fund for Agricultural Academics and Veterinary Surgeons (PJD), said in March 2013 that it would transform its real estate strategy.
It planned to sell its entire portfolio of Danish buildings and put the proceeds in indirect vehicles to gain exposure to European and US real estate. The new strategy is aimed at ensuring higher long-term returns and better risk diversification, Unipension said.
“In general, we are seeing a good level of interest from potential buyers for the pension funds’ Danish properties,” Unipension’s board said.
Interest was particularly great for residential properties and centrally located commercial properties, it said. However, interest was more limited for commercial properties on the edge of Copenhagen or outside the city. Seven commercial properties in central Copenhagen with a value of almost DKK840m remain in Unipension’s joint administration of the three pension funds.
These properties were transferred to the new real estate management company Unipension Ejendomme, which had now been fully established. The company is being administered by property firm DEAS.
Unipension Ejendomme has in turn been sold to Unipension’s property arm Unipension RE.
“The investments are being monitored on an ongoing basis and viewed partly in the context of the internationalisation of the property portfolio and partly in the light of market opportunities,” Unipension said.
It also cited opportunities to reduce the portfolio’s vacancy rate and develop properties in cooperation with landlords with the intention of strengthening potential returns, thereby increasing the value of the property.