The real estate arm of Columbia Threadneedle Investments has been appointed to manage a €600m portfolio of 23 high-street assets across 11 European countries.

Columbia Threadneedle Real Estate said it has been awarded the mandate to become the new manager of the City Retail Europe Fund, a fund IPE Real Assets understands was previously managed by AEW.

AEW has been approached for comment.

Columbia Threadneedle Real Estate’s team in France, which owns and manages 29 high-street retail assets in nine countries across Europe through its Best Value Europe franchise, will manage the City Retail Europe Fund.

The addition of the City Retail Europe portfolio will bring the team’s assets to over 50 high-street retail properties and over €2bn under management. Globally, this new mandate will take assets in the retail sector to over €6bn.

The City Retail Europe Fund’s properties are located in cities that include Madrid, Barcelona, Lisbon, Porto, Milan, Rome and Copenhagen.

Ian Kelley, managing director and head of France, Benelux & Southern Europe at Columbia Threadneedle Real Estate, said most of the properties were in prime locations, appealing to premium international brands and retail tenants.

Kelley said: “We see great potential in optimising the portfolio through a mixture of refurbishments, adapting for mixed-use, refinancing and continuing to provide excellent showcase stores to current and new tenants.

“Through this deal, the real estate team in France becomes one of the largest managers of high-street properties in Europe. This is credit to our dedicated team with its extensive high-street expertise and our capacity in delivering value for our clients.”

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