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- AXA buys iconic Milan office asset for 120m

Date: 29 Jul 2016

AXA Investment Managers - Real Assets (AXA IM - Real Assets) has completed the acquisition of Via della Chiusa 2, an iconic office complex located in Milan's historical city centre, via a share deal, for c.120 million. The property was acquired on behalf of one of its clients, and forms part of AXA IM - Real Assets' value-add strategy on account of the value-enhancing refurbishment potential that has been identified.

Via della Chiusa 2 comprises two separate buildings, each with its own entrance, arranged over four and six floors respectively, in addition to two basement levels offering 122 parking spaces, totalling c. 25,000 sqm. The asset is centrally located in the historical centre of Milan, an area lacking in high quality office accommodation whilst benefitting from the northern powerhouse's strong transport infrastructure and local amenities. The two buildings are currently fully let to strong covenants, all from professional services industries.

With the asset's primary tenant, occupying 70% of the gross lettable area, vacating the building in August 2016, AXA IM - Real Assets identified the opportunity to undertake a comprehensive refurbishment programme, upgrading the building to Grade A standard, offering a modern and flexible layout. The enhanced asset is expected to hold the highest sustainability and efficiency certifications, while both the interior and surrounding external spaces will be improved in their entirety, resulting in the implementation of highly desirable facilities and common areas, and the ability to accommodate multiple tenants on each floor, if required.

Alessio Lucentini, Head of Asset Management & Transactions in Italy, at AXA IM - Real Assets, commented: "Having completed over 1.6 billion of transactions over the last three years, 700 million of which has been dedicated to Milan office assets, this latest acquisition is further evidence of our confidence in the long term prospects of the Italian real estate market, and the sustainable occupier demand in the country's financial hub of Milan, in particular."

"The strength of our team's local market network and expertise enabled us to gain access to this unique transaction in a prime area of the historical city centre; we now look forward to leveraging AXA IM - Real Assets' development capabilities to transform Via della Chiusa 2 into a landmark office asset in line with the highest international standards, maximising its value for the benefit of our investors."

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