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Bermaso acquires retail portfolio Zilverpand Bruges from Aberdeen

Cushman & Wakefield advised Bermaso on the acquisition of a retail portfolio including the inner city shopping complex Zilverpand in Bruges.

Cushman & Wakefield, together with Geproma, acted on behalf of an Antwerp based private investor, Bermaso , for the acquisition of the a 4.353 m² in town shopping center in Bruges ‘ Zilverpand ‘ and 4 high street retail properties Grand Optical (Huidevetterstraat 5, Antwerp), R95th (Groendalstraat 19, Antwerp), Caroline Biss (Lange Steenstraat 1, Kortrijk) and River Woods (Antwerpsestraat 15, Lier).

Seller is Aberdeen Asset Management, and the portfolio consists of two companies, Zilverpand NV and Aberdeen Balanced Belgium 1 BVBA (ABB1 BVBA), who respectively hold the long leasehold rights on the shopping complex Zilverpand in Bruges and the full ownership rights on the four high street retail properties as their main asset.

Zilverpand was sold through an asset deal via the transfer of the leasehold on the shopping complex while ABB1 BVBA was sold through a share deal. It is one of the most important and high profile retail investment transactions in the Belgian property market this year.

Zilverpand is a shopping complex of 27 retail units in the centre of Bruges, a UNESCO world heritage site.  The 4.353 m² retail complex was fully renovated in 2004-2006 and counts retailers including Tommy Hilfiger, Bart Smit, McGregor, KBC, Pepe Jeans, Planet Parfum and Ulla Popken as tenants.

Retail investments have become increasingly popular both amongst private and institutional investors in Belgium over recent years.  Retail outperformed all other property segments in Belgium in terms of investment volume with  EUR 890 million invested in 2012 whereof EUR 179 million invested in high street retail.  Over the first half of 2013 some 163 M EUR were already transacted in high street deals in Belgium.