ARCADIA Investment Group acquired „Elster Forum” shopping centre with over 14,400 m² rental space in Gera
The ARCADIA Investment Group has acquired the “Elster Forum” shopping centre with a rental area of more than 14,400 m² at Museumsplatz 2 in Gera and the associated multi-storey car park with approx. 376 parking spaces. The Leipzig project developer will comprehensively re-launch the property, optimize the space and change the name. In doing so, the image of the shopping centre is directed towards the future and a high level of recognition is achieved with the local population.
The “Elster Forum” was built in 2002 and 2003 according to the requirements of the retail trade at the time and is situated on a property of more than 6,250 m² in an exceptional A1 location in the inner city of Gera. It has its own car park on an adjacent property of around 2,350 m² with approx. 376 parking spaces. The seller of the property, the purchase price of which was tacitly agreed upon between the parties, is a company located in Luxembourg. The property brokers BNP Paribas and Cushman & Wakefield acted as joint intermediaries.
Alexander Folz, Managing Director of the ARCADIA Investment GmbH, is pleased with his company’s recent acquisition in the regional metropolis of Thuringia. Not only the good structural condition and the quality of the centre’s architecture as well its high revitalization potential were crucial factors for this commitment, but above all – the potential of the Gera location, which in his opinion is clearly underestimated. The city with more than 96,000 inhabitants (as of Dec 2017) and a catchment area of almost 500,000 people is characterized by a high centrality and a high purchasing power by East German standards. Alexander Folz praised the good cooperation with the city council. “Mayoress Dr. Hahn in particular supported us very well.”
Well-known tenants of the “Elster Forum” include Rossmann, Blume 2000, the shoe store Antilope, Pfennigpfeiffer and Galeria Kaufhof, which can be seen as an anchor tenant with an area of approx. 8,710 m². However, Galeria Kaufhof is leaving the center in September this year. According to Alexander Folz, this allows for a unique opportunity to rearrange and optimise the space in several areas of the centre, which as a whole will contribute to greater attractiveness for visitors. At the same time Mr Folz wants to improve the public’s perception of the centre. To this end ARCADIA will hold an ideas competition with prizes being awarded. This will enable the people of Gera to give their shopping centre its future name.
The plans of the ARCADIA Investment Group are also approved by Mayoress Dr. Viola Hahn who believes the commitment of the Leipzig project developer will be a further boost to the city: “I expect a positive boost and an increase in attractiveness for the city centre. The investor for the Elster Forum opens up new future prospects. Business will continue, even if Galeria Kaufhof does not extend their lease.
Support for planning the conversion is to be provided by the architect’s office, Vahjen from Braunschweig, who are experienced in retail refurbishment. Initial concepts will be developed as soon as exploratory talks have been held with existing tenants. From a legal perspective, the purchase was accompanied for the sellers by Hogan Lovells and on the buyer side by bethge I Immobilienanwälte from Hanover, a law firm specialising in real estate transactions. Christian Dinger, Managing Director of ARCADIA Financial Services GmbH, is responsible for structuring the financing of the project acquisition.
ARCADIA Investment Group has focused its specialisation on the development of property used for retail and residential properties as well as car parks and underground car parks throughout the entire Germany. In addition to activities relating to its own portfolio, it has also implemented a host of projects in the framework of joint ventures – amongst others in close collaboration with numerous national and international companies. One of the company’s core business functions is also the optimisation, maintenance and expansion of the property portfolio of family businesses with the utmost care and confidentiality. ARCADIA Investment GmbH as the holding company for the group currently employs 20 people and is developing areas with a magnitude of more than 200,000 square meters. The accompanying project volume amounts to round 165 million euro.
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