GLOBAL - Aligned Asset Managers has acquired a majority stake in the Townsend Group.

Townsend, established in 1983, is a global specialty real estate advisory and investment firm, with more than $100bn (€70bn) of total advised assets, allocating capital on a discretionary and non-discretionary basis for more than 85 leading institutional clients.

The company's existing leadership team will maintain responsibility for management of the business.

In other news, RREEF has acquired two properties in the UK on behalf of its German Spezialfonds for a total of £43m (€49m).

The first deal sees RREEF acquiring Lateral, an office building on City Walk, Leeds, for £24.3m. The property was developed in 2005 and is let to the Secretary of State for Communities & Local Government.

The second building is the St Mary's Shopping Centre in Market Harborough, Leicestershire. RREEF acquired the property for £18.7m.

RREEF also advised one of its clients on the acquisition of a logistics property in Dartmouth for £80m.

AEW Europe sold the property, which is let to Sainsbury's Supermarkets.

In London, Hannover Leasing has just acquired the office building at 30 Crown Place, which was completed in 2009.

Hannover bought the property from Greycoat Central London Office Development Fund for £139m.

The property is earmarked for a closed-end real estate fund to which it will be added in the third quarter this year.

Moving to Germany, Highstreet has closed a sales agreement with a joint venture formed by German real estate company Centrum and Austrian firm Signa for two properties in the centre of Munich.

Highstreet will then acquire Oberpollinger department store and the adjacent Karstadt-sportstore.

Both properties are 100% let to Karstadt Warenhaus and were sold for €248m.

Another investor, Deutsche Euroshop (DES), has acquired 50% of the Allee-Center in Magdeburg for €118m. The property was sold by Unibail-Rodamco.

Still in Germany, the Saller Gruppe has acquired the Jute Centre in Delmenhorst near Hamburg from Jute Immobilien und Projektentwicklung for an undisclosed amount.

The new landlord will work with DTZ Zadelhoff to continue managing the centre, which was built in 1999.

Meanwhile, Germany's Union Investment has announced the launch of a new property Spezialfond of €250m, as well as its first acquisition.

The Residential Value Spezialfond, which draws all assets from one unnamed institutional investor, was launched at the end of June and has since acquired a cluster of three residential estates in the south west of Berlin, but Union declined to reveal the deal's value.

The 223 units in the Ortlergärten development, built between 1937 and 1992, are 95% let and were previously owned by an unnamed listed French property company, which renovated the entire development prior to its sale.

A spokesman for Union Investment said the Spezialfond already has access to its entire €250m capital, to be invested over the next 3-4 years.

"We will consider, in addition to portfolios, individual objects from around €4m to €5m," he told IPE, adding that the fund's focus would be on the Berlin property market.

In Sweden, Henderson Global Investors has reached an agreement with Alecta Pensionsförsäkring Ömsesidigt to acquire a shopping centre on behalf of its German business Warburg Henderson.

The deal, which is valued at SEK558m (€61m), been signed for Warburg - Henderson European Core Property Fund 1.

The shopping centre is located in Eskilstuna, in the Malarden region.

Finally, Boston-based real estate investment management firm Rockpoint Group has sold the 49.5% stake the company owned in a 44-storey Manhattan office tower to Alaska Permanent Fund. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The group's $2.5bn (€1.75bn) Rockpoint Fund III had purchased the minority stake in the 1.2m square feet 299 Park Avenue building from Union Bank of Switzerland, the building's largest tenant, in June 2010.

At the time, the company paid $150m for the stake and also took over $325m in mortgage.

The other 50.5% of the building, located in the center of the New York's plaza district, is held by Fisher Brothers, which operates the building.

In May this year, Rockpoint said it was putting its minority share in the 299 Park Avenue Building on the market.

APF was advised by LaSalle Investment Management, while Rockpoint was advised by CB Richard Ellis.