Stockland, which released strong interim results on Wednesday, is selling its Woolworths-anchored neighbourhood mall in its Highlands community in Craigieburn with price expectations of about $40 million.
“This quarter we will place Stockland Highlands on the market and as announced in August 2017 we are aiming to divest $300 million of retail town centres over the next 12 to 18 months, of which approximately $70 million has been completed to date,” Stockland managing director Mark Steinert said.
The mall in Melbourne’s outer northern suburbs is anchored by a Woolworths supermarket, The Reject Shop plus 17 specialty stores including a medical centre and a new Woolworths petrol station.
The offering comes as private investors and funds such as Real Asset Management compete for neighbourhood and convenience malls, which are considered better insulated against the growth of online shopping and the arrival of Amazon.
Stockland Highlands is being marketed by Justin Dowers and Mark Wizel from CBRE, who declined to comment.
Recent research compiled by CBRE shows that neighbourhood shopping centres in Victoria have consistently traded at sub-6 per cent yields.
According to CBRE, Victorian neighbourhood shopping centre performance has been underwritten by the state’s surging population growth, which is sitting at 2.34 per cent, higher than any other state in the country.
Chinese investors have remained interested in the sector, with 28 per cent of sales in 2017 having been sold to Chinese investors and 42 per cent in 2016.
Earlier this week, The Australian Financial Review reported that Melbourne investor James Zhang bought Marketplace Deagon, a neighbourhood shopping centre in Brisbane’s northern suburbs, for $23.3 million.
Mr Zhang’s Bao Li Hai International Investment acquired the 2374-square-metre mall at 55 Braun Street, anchored by a Prince’s Supa IGA supermarket and five mini-majors including The Reject Shop, on a yield of 6.95 per cent.
Earlier in February, Toorak-based investor David Feldman added to his growing retail property portfolio after buying the Torquay Village Shopping Centre on Victoria’s Surf Coast from Coles for $35 million.
The neighbourhood shopping centre – with a full-line Coles supermarket, Liquorland and 15 specialty shops on a 1.4-hectare site at 41 Bristol Road – was acquired by Mr Feldman on a 5.9 per cent yield.