Europa Capital, investing on behalf of its value-add fund, has set up a light industrial real estate investment platform with DeA Capital Real Estate’s French business.

Europa said the Europa Fund VI fund and DeA Capital Real Estate France have seeded the newly launched French Light Industrial Platform with a 28,400sqm seed portfolio of five assets.

The platform, which has a €100m gross asset value target, is forward funding the speculative development of the five projects in a deal with developer Axtom.

The assets – located across Wattrelos, Colombier, Epernon, Brignoles and Saint-Herblain – are expected to be delivered between the fourth quarter of 2022 and 2023.

Jason Oram, partner and fund manager at Europa Capital, said: “The launch of the French Light Industrial Platform builds on our existing presence in France, whilst also following our strategy of forming country-specific platforms of scale in the light industrial and logistics space.

“Demand for light industrial space situated close to urban areas continues to outstrip supply and we expect these near-term developments to present an attractive offering to prospective occupiers.”

Europa said the latest investment increases the size of its current portfolio of light industrial and logistics assets to 815,000sqm across a range of geographies including the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland.

Jonathan Mansie, managing director, origination and acquisitions at Europa Capital, said: “There is a compelling shortage of new light industrial stock in our target markets, and we look forward to working closely with our joint-venture partner, DeA Capital.

“Forward-funding yields for speculative light industrial developments currently provide an attractive margin over those for fully stabilised assets, and we continue to seek further opportunities in this sector.”

Emanuele Dubini, CEO at DeA Capital Real Estate France, said: “We have seen strong value proposition in this asset class. The team has been actively working to source deals from well-known developers and delivered a solid and reliable partnership.”

Pierre Julin, managing director at DeA Capital Real Estate France, said: “We are already focusing on scaling up the platform with other assets to be aggregated in the coming months and in the meantime leveraging on the deep expertise of our asset management team to implement our leasing and ESG strategy.”

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