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SLI’s Select Property Fund secures record lease in Poland

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Standard Life Investments has announced that Panattoni Park in the Polish city of Stryków, a key development for its Select Property Fund, has secured the biggest ever lease within

Standard Life Investments has announced that Panattoni Park in the Polish city of Stryków, a key development for its Select Property Fund, has secured the biggest ever lease within the Polish warehouse market.

The deal consists of a 56,000-square metre lease to Leroy Merlin, a French-based DIY retailer operating in the Polish market since 1994. To be developed during 2008 in a joint venture with Panattoni Development Company and on behalf of fund, Panattoni Park is a 100,000-square metre distribution warehouse facility in Stryków, which is north of Lódz in central Poland.

Since its launch in October 2005, the Select Property Fund has made direct property acquisitions in countries including the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, Portugal and Australia. The fund has seen its retail accumulation unit price rise 16.74 per cent, and assets under management now stand at GBP1.26bn.

‘We are delighted to have secured this letting, which adds to the success of our development programme for the Select Property Fund,’ says James Rushworth, director of European investments at SLI’s Paris office.

‘The fund has a development programme in excess of 700,000 square metres of logistics and retail accommodation in Europe – equivalent to almost seven Wembley stadiums – with an end value of more than EUR550m.

‘The strategy has been to focus the fund’s direct investments in Europe on opportunities where value-add opportunities exist in economies with strong fundamentals. The GDP growth in Poland last year was 6.5 per cent and it is expected that consumer spending will increase by more than 5 per cent in 2008. Such growth contributes to strong demand for both retail accommodation and distribution networks.

‘Also in the form of a joint venture with Panattoni, the first scheme completed was another development in Lódz adjacent to the new Dell manufacturing facility. The scheme was fully let during construction and proved such a success that we are developing an adjoining plot, which has again let before completion.’

Robert Dobrzycki, manager of Panattoni Poland, says: ‘This is the second time our team in Poland have achieved a letting in excess of 50,000 square metres and we are delighted to be constructing another key distribution facility for an international retailer in Poland.’

The Select Property Fund offers both institutional and retail investors access to property markets in North America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region. The fund accesses commercial property markets via direct investment, unquoted specialist property products and stock exchange-listed property securities.

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