To that end, Pertinea purchased the Op de Brouwerij shopping centre in Enschede last August, followed by the Buytenwegh shopping centre in Zoetermeer in December. So this Belgian fund management company has markedly penetrated the Dutch market. And the company, which was founded by Philip De Greve and is managed in the Netherlands by Caroline Droste, does not intend to stop at these two purchases. Its ambition is to acquire more retail spaces in the Netherlands, focusing on district shopping centres with a considerable emphasis on convenience.
Since its foundation, De Greve has raised approximately €100 million from a stable group of professional investors, thereby enabling Pertinea to realise its ambitions. According to De Greve, ‘we have been investing in Belgian retail for some 10 years. The decision to enter the Dutch market is, of course, driven by diversification, as the countries are quite different in macro-economic terms. However, this decision has been boosted by the fact that some of our investors also hail from the Netherlands themselves. Their understanding of and insight into the Dutch market makes entering it a natural progression.’
The shopping centres bought by Pertinea in the Netherlands are destined for the RE-tail Return Partners II investment initiative, the company’s second such initiative. The first, closed retail fund initiative has invested assets of over €100m in Belgian retail. Half of the investors for this initiative are institutional parties, including several large and smaller Belgian insurers and pension funds. ‘The other half consist of family offices that predominantly have their roots in retail and real estate', explains De Greve. Pertinea's executive team has also invested.
The minimum investment that can be made is €2.5 million. According to Droste, ‘this ensures that both private investors and institutional parties share the same vision of investment, namely professionally-led with a focus on the long-term. Risk management is important. We focus on steady cash flow and capital preservation’. The fund remains open to new participants.
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