2005-06-30 15:49Press release

Niam Buys Crown Fastigheter to Expand Its Retail Holdings

Niam Fund III has acquired Crown Fastigheter and its 59 retail properties, and 15 ICA supermarkets. The properties have a combined value of EUR 87 million. In total, Niam Fund III plans to invest EUR 200-300 million in retail properties in the next few years.

“Building up a strong portfolio of retail properties in the Nordic and Baltic region will enable us to counterbalance our large holding of office properties,” says Henrik Saxborn, Head of Acquisitions and Managing Partner at Niam. “With their long leases, retail properties are relatively secure investments.”

Since the inception of the Fund in June 2004, Niam Fund III has acquired properties totalling EUR 640 million. The fund intends to enter into more joint ventures in the future, similar to that with Crown, across all property sectors in the Nordic and Baltic region.

Crown to Remain Asset Manager

Crown Fastigheter and its 59 retail properties originate in a deal carried out in March 2003. At that time the British company Kenmore Property Group and the American company Royal Investments acquired a portfolio of 93 retail premises all over Sweden via Crown European Holding Ltd. Crown, acting as asset manager, subsequently undertook active restructuring, and the 59 most attractive properties now remain. Axfood and Vi stores are among the most notable.

Crown will continue to act as asset manager in the future and will also have a minor ownership in the company. The team consists of Håkan Larsson, Bosse Sandberg, Lars Ransgart and Sören Ferin, all of whom possess long experience of managing and structuring major property portfolios. Crown was the driving force in the creation of the property companies, for example Amplion and Stenvalvet. Altogether Crown has acted as consultant on property transactions in Sweden valued at over EUR 1.3 billion.

“We are highly confident about expanding our investment in retail property in collaboration with this capable and successful team” says Henrik Saxborn.

About Niam AB

Niam, founded in 1998, is a leading private equity real estate firm in Northern Europe. Our head office is located in Stockholm, Sweden, and we have local offices in the Nordic capital cities of Oslo, Helsinki and Copenhagen. Niam has one of the largest real estate teams specifically focused on the Nordic Region. We recognize that our core strength is our people and our success is dependent upon attracting and developing the top real estate professionals in the region. Simply stated…Niam is people. Niam strives to be the Partner of Choice for Nordic real estate. Our network encompasses strong relationships that extend over decades with leading global institutional investors, European banks, tenants, municipalities and the local community. Our top managers average over 26 years of direct real estate experience. It is this collection of knowledge that makes Niam the Partner of Choice.