SINGAPORE (May 17): CapitaLand Commercial Trust is making its first foray into Europe with the acquisition of a stake in Gallileo, an office property located in Frankfurt, Germany.

The freehold Grade A property, valued €356 million ($569.6 million), is located in the prime Central Business District (CBD), also known as the Banking District.

The property is near to the German Central Bank, European Central Bank office towers, and the Frankfurt Opera House. The property also has easy access to a U-Bahn station at Willy-Brandt Platz, the Frankfurt Main Railway Station and Frankfurt Airport.

CCT will hold a 94.9% stake while CapitaLand will hold the remaining 5.1% stake in the property through a special purpose vehicle. The completion of the acquisition is expected to take place in June.

Says Kevin Chee, CEO of the manager of CCT, “Providing income stability with an established anchor tenant on a long-term lease, the acquisition offers an attractive net property income yield of 4.0%. This accretive acquisition is expected to increase CCT’s 1Q 2018 DPU by 1.4%, to 2.15 cents from 2.12 cents on a pro forma basis. Post-acquisition, CCT’s portfolio value will increase from $10.4 billion to $10.9 billion.”

The agreed property value of Gallileo at €356 million, negotiated on a willing-buyer and willing-seller basis, represents a discount of 1.4% to the open market value of €360.9 million appraised by valuer Cushman & Wakefield LLP.

The funding of CCT’s total acquisition cost of of €342.7 million or $548.3 million will be through a private placement of new units to raise $208.8 million of net proceeds and bank borrowings of €212.2 million.

With the proposed private placement, the manager intends to declare an advanced distribution of income for the period from Jan 1 to the day immediately prior to the date on which the new placement units are issued.

The estimated distribution per CCT unit under the advanced distribution will be approximately 3.49 cents with the actual amount of advanced distribution to be announced in due course.

Tata Goeyardi, analyst of Soochow CSSD Capital Markets, says he is somewhat surprised by the acquisition at this juncture as CCT is still digesting the recent AST2 acquisition, as well as currently developing CapitaSpring.

While he does not see anything particularly concerning about the asset, Goeyardi says investors sentiment towards CCT’s unit price would likely depend on how one perceives its decision to go overseas and become a non pure-Singapore play anymore and how funds will be re-allocated.

“While we continue to reiterate that investors sooner or later will have to accept the fact that SREITs are gradually moving abroad and SGX welcoming more overseas-based REITs to be listed in Singapore, CCT was one of the SREITs that was largely expected to remain SG-centric,” adds the analyst.