Project Jewel sold to Hammerson Plc and Allianz SE’s real estate unit

Hammerson Plc and Allianz SE’s real estate unit has agreed to buy a group of Dublin shopping-mall loans for 1.85 billion euros from NAMA.

The sale, known as Project Jewel, includes loans linked to the nation’s largest shopping mall and two other retail centers in Dublin and is expected to close before the end of October, NAMA and the buyers said in a joint e-mail on Tuesday. The par value of the loans was about 2.6 billion euros, the statement said.

“The competitive tension throughout the loan sales process is continuing evidence of the strong investor appetite for property-related loans in Ireland,” NAMA CEO Brendan McDonagh said.

The loans are secured by assets including the Dundrum Town Centre, a 150,000 square-meter (1.6 million square-foot) mall, and 50 percent stakes in the Ilac Centre and the Pavilions shopping mall. The properties are owned by developer Joe O’Reilly’sChartered Land Ltd. Irish consumers have been playing an increasing role in the nation’s economic recovery in the past 18 months, with retail sales rising by an annual 9.3 percent in August, according to Central Statistics Office data published on Monday.

“The transaction provides a unique opportunity to increase our exposure to Europe’s fastest growing economy, creating a platform for significant investment and employment opportunities going forward,” David Atkins, chief executive officer of shopping mall landlord Hammerson, said in a statement.

Eastdil Secured brokered the sale for NAMA.

Source: Bloomberg.