Oxford Properties and Novaxia have partnered to invest €1bn in life science properties in France.

The companies have entered into the partnership to invest in and, primarily, develop the life science assets over the next few years.

French urban investor and developer Novaxia will act as development manager and co-asset manage alongside Oxford.

The companies said the first phase of the partnership’s investment activity will focus on Paris. The partnership is exploring other emerging markets such as Lyon and Strasbourg.

Joachim Azan, president and founder of Novaxia, said: “Novaxia is opening up to partnerships and breaking new ground by adding another string to its urban recycling bow. Following housing, Novaxia will recycle obsolete buildings into places of innovation in the life sciences.”

Both Oxford and Novaxia entered the life sciences asset class in 2017.

A year ago, Oxford, the global real estate asset management arm of Canada’s OMERS, marked its entry into the European life science real estate sector with an acquisition in the UK and said it planned to invest £1.2bn (€1.42bn) in Europe over the next five years.

Pierre Leocadio, the head of investment, Europe at Oxford Properties, said: “Building a global life sciences business of scale remains one of Oxford’s highest priority investment strategies and France is one of our strongest conviction markets in Europe for growth.

“Having undertaken significant investment into strategic life science markets in North America and UK in recent years, our sights are firmly set on replicating those successes in France.”

Aude Landy-Berkowitz, executive director of Novaxia Développement said: “This partnership is a tremendous step forward for the life sciences community in France.

“The need is urgent, and we need to be able to develop innovation and research hubs that offer a real-estate pathway from small start-ups to large enterprises.”

Abby Shapiro, senior VP and head of office, retail and life sciences, Europe at Oxford Properties, said: “Through this partnership, we will look to capitalise on our complementary skill sets. Oxford has a committed and permanent source of capital as well as a global viewpoint on best practices within the life sciences sector.

“Combined with Novaxia’s deep local market knowledge and relationships with local life science firms and key stakeholders, we believe we can offer a compelling solution to deliver the critically needed real estate infrastructure to help ensure France remains a leader in life sciences.”

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