Denmark’s largest pension fund ATP has acquired five commercial properties in the Carlsberg City development in Copenhagen - the first time it has bought into the high-profile project backed by several of the Nordic country’s labour-market pension providers.

The real estate arm of ATP, which runs the DKK858.5bn (€115.4bn) statutory labour-market supplementary pension scheme, announced this morning it had bought the properties - which contain 21,500sqm of commercial space overall - from Udviklingsselskabet Carlsberg Byen, the owner and developer of Carlsberg City to the west of Copenhagen’s centre.

Udviklingsselskabet Carlsberg Byen is 30% owned by PFA Pension, 25% by Carlsberg Breweries, and also by PenSam and TopDanmark - which each hold a 22.5% stake in the joint venture.

ATP Real Estate described the acquisition as a “billion deal” but disclosed no more precise value. One billion Danish kroner are currently worth €134m.

ATP said the properties purchased were newly built in 2021 and 2022 and consisted exclusively of properties for commercial rental.

André Scharf, CIO of ATP Real Estate, said: “A long-term investment in Carlsberg Byen is particularly attractive due to the atmosphere that Udviklingsselskabet Carlsberg Byen P/S has been successful in developing.”

This atmosphere stemmed from a “fantastic” mix of housing, offices and shops in the area, he said.

“The purchase of the modern and central commercial leases of a total size of 21,500m2 is, in our opinion, a unique opportunity and extremely attractive for office customers - both now and in the long term,” Scharf said.

“The investment gives ATP Real Estate a great opportunity to occupy a long-term position in a growth area, and we regard these properties as an obvious addition to ATP Real Estate’s already strong office portfolio,” the CIO said.

Scharf said the investment emphasised two key elements of the ATP unit’s strategy: “That we are moving more long-term investments onto Danish soil, and our ambition to secure the framework for the modern workplace with attractive commercial properties in the largest Danish cities,” he said.

Meanwhile, Jens Nyhus, chief executive officer of Udviklingsselskabet Carlsberg Byen (Carlsberg City Development Company) said his firm was happy to have sold as many as five central properties, which housed offices, food and beverage and retail outlets, to such a large and reputable Danish real estate investor.

“Some of the properties have already been rented out to good, solid tenants, and we look forward to a good collaboration with ATP Real Estate regarding the letting of the few remaining areas,” Nyhus said.

Ten years ago, when the consortium of Danish institutions - which then also included Realdania - clubbed together to buy the former Carlsberg brewery site in Copenhagen for around DKK2.5bn (€335m), the parties described the deal as the largest Danish development transaction ever.

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