AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets, has bought a portfolio of logistics in Northern Italy for €270m from The Carlyle Group.

The CER-L portfolio includes 11 standing assets encompassing some 310,000sqm of space and two development projects that are intended to provide 80,000sqm and are expected to achieve a LEED Silver certification.

The portfolio is let to domestic and international occupiers spanning the food and beverage, fashion, third-party logistics and energy sectors, on a weighted-average lease term of seven years.

The portfolio is concentrated in Greater Milan, Padua and Turin, three of Northern Italy’s most established logistics markets.

It is the latest addition to AXA IM–Real Assets’ €2.2bn European logistics portfolio.

Nicola Cardani, head of transactions in Italy at AXA IM–Real Assets, said: “This is a rare opportunity to acquire a portfolio of high-quality logistics assets let to strong covenants and achieve immediate scale in a country with a logistics market that, to date, has been underpinned by relatively low e-commerce penetration.

“The portfolio offers extremely resilient income from day one, with the medium-term opportunity to leverage the mix of vacancy and shorter leases to capture significant reversion.

“The European logistics sector continues to benefit from the structural shifts driven by the rapid growth of e-commerce, which has accelerated in recent months, as well as evolving changes to supply chains and our pan-European logistics platform is ideally positioned to take advantage of these trends on behalf of our clients.”

Carlyle’s European real estate business began aggregating the porfolio in 2017, carrying out acquisitions, refurbishments and developments.

Carlyle said the “institutional-quality logistics platform” had “proved resilient throughout the COVID-19 pandemic”.

Anssi Halonen, managing director in the Carlyle Europe Realty advisory team, said: “This transaction exemplifies our strategy of investing in well-located, high-quality assets through successful asset acquisition and active asset management, supported by a strong market environment that has benefited from rapid growth in e-commerce.”

He said Carlyle would “remain active in the Italian market”.

In October, Carlyle acquired 27 distribution logistics assets in France and Germany.