Blackstone hires CBRE to divest commercial property investments

18 August 2016

Real estate investor and asset manager Blackstone wants to take advantage of the high real estate prices in the Netherlands by selling part of its property portfolio in the country, valued at approximately €500 million. According to Bloomberg, which bases itself on insiders that wish to remain anonymous, the firm has hired property adviser CBRE to advise on the divestment process.

The Dutch real estate market is strengthening rapidly after bottoming out in 2013. During the market downturn, several venture investors took positions in the property market, with the hope of achieving strong returns on their investment within a number of years, on the projection that the market would again picked up steam. 

In recent months the Dutch commercial property market has picked up strongly – especially buildings in high value office locations, such as the Zuidas in Amsterdam and offices in cities like Rotterdam and The Hague, have seen their value appreciate at a rapid pace. On the back of increased offices prices, several investors have already brought their offices investments back to the market, with Blackstone the latest to follow suit, according to Bloomberg.

Business district Amsterdam

In 2014, Blackstone, one of the largest real estate investors and asset managers in alternative asset classes in the world, added six large offices to its existing portfolio in the Netherlands for €165 million. The acquisition included the Weena Tower in Rotterdam and Orion (next to the Central Station) in The Hague. The Cross Towers in Amsterdam also came under the real estate investors’ management – Cross Towers was, for many years, the Dutch headquarters of Big Four professional services firm EY.

Blackstone intends to exit part of its €500 million Dutch property portfolio, reportedly with a focus on selling off investments concentrated in Amsterdam and Utrecht, two of the countries’ main business districts. To assist in the sale of the properties, Blackstone has hired CBRE, with more than 70,000 employees in over 400 offices one of the largest consultancy and investment firms for commercial real estate of the globe.