Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM) is investing €438m in majority shares of two large office and retail properties in central Paris and Berlin, via a new joint venture with Swiss Life.

Swiss Life said an investment vehicle targeting core, mainly commercial, real estate assets in Berlin and Paris, had been established for the two partners to invest in, which would be managed by Swiss Life Asset Managers.

A spokeswoman for NBIM, which runs Norway’s NOK12trn (€1.2trn) Government Pension Fund Global, confirmed that this was the first time it had invested with Swiss Life.

The parties said the partnership had signed two deals so far, to buy VoltAir – a new mixed-use property located on Voltairstrasse 8-10 in Berlin – and 86 Boulevard Haussmann, an office property in central Paris.

NBIM said it was buying a 65% interest in both properties, with Swiss Life holding the remainder.

Both agreements were signed yesterday, with completion expected in February 2023 for VoltAir and in December 2022 for 86 Boulevard Haussmann, NBIM said.

The Oslo-based SWF manager said it would pay €297m for its interest in VoltAir, valuing the property at €457m, and  €141m for its stake in the Paris asset, valuing that property at €217m.

The sellers of VoltAir – which comprises about 30,000sqm of office and retail space – are ABG Real Estate and Gaedeke & Sons, while the 11,000sqm Boulevard Haussman property is being sold to the new partnership by Swiss Life Assurance et Patrimoine, Swiss Life Prevoyance et Santé and Swiss Life Assurances de Biens, according to NBIM.

The Norwegian institutional investor said both assets would be unencumbered by debt, and no financing would be involved in the transaction.

Swiss Life Asset Management, which will perform asset management for the two properties, said both the Berlin and Paris assets were fully let.

Stefan Mächler, group CIO at Swiss Life, said: “We are pleased to partner with an experienced and financially strong institutional investor with a long-term investment horizon.” 

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