AXA Real Estate Investment Managers (AXA REIM) has made the first closure of its European retail income venture fund (ERIV). Around €280m of equity was raised from mainly French, Dutch and Scandinavian institutions.
With leverage the fund has a €700m investment pot to spend on retail warehouses, retail parks, supermarkets and shops in city centres. Existing assets and projects under development are being targeted.
ERIV has acquired assets in Belgium and Spain and is seeking to acquire single properties and portfolios in west, north and central Europe. Some will have refurbishment or asset management opportunities.
ERIV’s Jean-Christophe Bretxa, said: “ I am confident that our team will capitalise on our knowledge and expertise to identify opportunities and focus on countries and market segments where there is great potential and value for our investors.”
l AXA REIM has also opened an office in Budapest as the next stage of its expansion into central Europe. Headed by John Verpeleti, who was recently recruited as head of central Europe, the Budapest office’s main role will be to manage the existing investment portfolio as well to handle the current buying requirements of AXA REIM’s various pan-European real estate funds.
Initially the acquisition focus will be on Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia. The team will also keep an eye on emerging real estate markets elsewhere in central and eastern Europe.
Mr Verpeleti said: “This a logical extension to our presence in western and southern Europe.”