Foreign investors re-enter dutch retail property market

Investment volume risen to € 1.49 billion


Foreign investors made substantial investments in Dutch retail property last year. The investment volume rose to about € 1.49 billion, compared with just over € 805 million in 2013. The percentage of foreign capital was therefore much larger in 2014 than it was in preceding years: about 47%. However, the user market remained behind. The total occupancy rate dropped by about 22%. These are the most important conclusions of Retail MarketView 2014 by property advisor CBRE, which has just been published.

The increase in foreign capital in Dutch retail property is partly due to the purchase of two shopping centres by Mount Kellet and Blackstone, both private equity parties. The sale of larger retail premises also contributed to the increased investment volume. Kroonenberg Groep, for example, bought Kalvertoren in Amsterdam, and Meyer Bergman bought FOC Bataviastad. Listed funds such as Unibail-Rodamco, Vastned and Wereldhave continued to focus on prominent core assets last year, while smaller local investors and family businesses mostly bought units in the main shopping streets and small to medium-sized property. An example is HB Capital, which acquired the Miro Center in Enschede.

Occupancy rate

The total occupancy rate on the user market dropped by about 22% in comparison with the previous year. According to the available data more than 410,000 m2 was occupied. Approximately 20% of total occupancy was based in the four largest cities of the Netherlands: Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht. Other cities that stand out in terms of number of transactions are Groningen and Leiden. In Amsterdam nearly half of all the transactions took place in the city centre. The De Pijp district was also very popular. In The Hague the demand in the city centre was even higher: about 56% of all the transactions took place there. By comparison, there was slightly less demand for units in the city centres of Utrecht and Rotterdam.

2014 was a difficult year for retailers in the middle segment, while discount formulas were on the rise. There were also new parties, such as the German companies Kik and Tedi. The top segment also saw new entrants, such as Forever Flawless, La Perla and Kult. Most luxury retailers continue to opt for Amsterdam.

Download the CBRE Retail MarketView 2014 below.


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