Industrial property landlord Centuria Industrial REIT (CIP) has taken its spending spree this financial year past the $500 million mark after buying a cold storage shed on the Gold Coast leased to Financial Review Rich Lister Jack Cowin’s Competitive Foods Australia group.
The listed property trust has agreed to pay $43 million for the 9554-square-metre property on a 2.1 hectare site at 1 Lahrs Road in Ormeau within the Yatala Enterprise Area. The deal was struck on an initial yield of 5.5 per cent.
The Ormeau property is fully occupied by Markwell Cold Storage, a subsidiary of Mr Cowin’s Competitive Foods Australia, which owns fast food franchise Hungry Jack’s and is the largest franchisor of restaurants in Australia.
The vendor was logistics platform ESR Australia, which paid $29 million for the cold storage facility in 2015. It sold with a further 6.5 years remaining on the current lease, with Markwell paying annual rent of $2.36 million.
The Ormeau cold storage warehouse is the sixth asset acquired by Centuria Industrial REIT since the start of July, and takes its total spending this financial year to $523 million.
The trust has more than $2.1 billion of assets in its portfolio, with the latest deal expanding its exposure to refrigerated logistics, following the recently completed development of a regional distribution centre in Townsville for Woolworths.
“A key growth thematic for CIP is the non-discretionary, food distribution and cold storage industries and this facility increases the trust’s exposure to food and cold storage-related users to almost 30 per cent by income,” CIP fund manager Jesse Curtis said.
“The modern, high-quality Ormeau property has been fully occupied by the well-established Maxwell Cold Storage since its construction,” he said.
The property was marketed by JLL’s Tony Iuliano and Gary Hyland along with Colliers International’s Gavin Bishop and Simon Berne.
“The cold storage sector has been a big focus for investors in 2020 as a result of the favourable underlying drivers of population growth, growing food consumption and the rise of the Asian middle class,” said Gavin Bishop, head of industrial capital markets in Australia for Colliers International.
“We estimate there is $26 billion in capital looking to invest in the industrial and logistics sector. With just over $3.5 billion trading so far in 2020, it highlights the significant mismatch between supply and demand and the significant volume of unsatisfied capital looking to be placed.”
According to Colliers International, in the nine months to September, $3.57 billion of industrial assets ($10 million and above) have changed hands. This compared with $3.38 billion traded at the same point in 2019.
Mr Iuliano said the Gold Coast transaction was testament to the “unprecedented demand” for modern, well-located cold storage facilities and was further evidence of the strength in the local industrial market.
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