Investa Commercial Property Fund has teamed with Manulife to acquire a 30,000sqm Sydney office development from Macquarie.

IPE Real Assets reported in October last year that Investa and Manulife were in talks to buy 39 Martin Place with pricing rumoured to be around an A$800m (€512m). 

The building which is being constructed by Lendllease is due for completion in 2024.

Peter Menegazzo, Investa’s chief investment officer, told IPE Real Assets: “This is our first (joint) investment. We are establishing a relationship with Manulife, and I hope we will do more in the future.”

Insurer and financial services firm Manulife – which recently formed a 50-50 joint venture with Investa to acquire prime assets in Australia – has been actively investing in Australia since 2017 as it pursues opportunities both directly and indirectly in Australia’s office and logistics sector.

Kenny Lam, senior managing director and head of Asia real estate investments for Manulife, said: “Despite some of the headwinds resulting from the pandemic, we are continuing to focus our expansion efforts on the Asia-Pacific region on high-quality assets which are supported by strong long-term macro and demographic prospects.”

Menegazzo said Investa was confident that Sydney’s central business district would recover.

The building acquired today did not have pre-leasing commitments, he said, but added: “The investment provides another opportunity for Investa to demonstrate its deep leasing capability, and reinforces our strong belief in the Martin Place precinct as a premium office location.”

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