Blackstone real estate funds have invested £250m (€290m) to buy a European logistics portfolio from an InfraRed Capital Partners managed fund.

The assets will be incorporated into Blackstone’s pan-European last-mile logistics platform Mileway

InfraRed Capital Partners sold the portfolio comprising 2.2m sqft of warehousing space across 50 properties in the UK and France on behalf of its InfraRed Active Real Estate Fund IV (IRAF IV).

The UK portfolio, totalling 1.6m sqft, is located mainly in the north west near the metropolitan areas of Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Sheffield. The French portfolio is entirely located in the Greater Paris region within well-established industrial hubs such as Malakoff, Massy, Palaiseau and Choisy.

Emmanuel van der Stichele, CEO of Mileway, said: “We’re delighted to have secured these exceptional last-mile assets from InfraRed. A key priority for Mileway has been building a market-leading in-house transactions team which has helped us establish a reputation as purchaser of choice among vendors.

”This transaction further strengthens Mileway’s portfolio as we continue to support our customers, helping them advance their businesses and meet the evolving needs of consumers.”

InfraRed said it grew the portfolio to its current size through a series of acquisitions over the course of 2018 and 2019 and carried out several value-enhancing initiatives including the refurbishment of existing assets and development of new space. 

Andreas Katsaros, fund manager of IRAF IV, said: “Over the course of the past year, the impact of COVID-19 has further boosted the development of the last-mile logistics sector. This has allowed us to crystallise exits across the UK and France earlier than anticipated.

”InfraRed has a decades-long, successful track record in the sector and we are pleased to realise value for our investors with the sale of some of our UK and French assets. InfraRed remains well placed to capture further investment opportunities from the last-mile logistics sector during the course of 2021.”

Dean Harrison, UK real estate investment director at InfraRed Capital Partners, said: “During our two-and-a-half year holding period, we have significantly grown the UK portfolio by developing around 270,000sqft of warehouses. We are particularly pleased with our partnership with Network Space, who acted as our development and asset manager.

”Leveraging our highly localised sourcing network across the UK, we also made a number of accretive bolt-on acquisitions adding a further 375,000sqft. We expect to remain very active in the sector and are looking to acquire further assets throughout 2021 for both IRAF IV and our dedicated Urban Logistics Income Fund.”

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