A joint venture between Benson Elliot, the London-based private equity real estate manager and Générale Continentale Investissements (GCI), the leading Paris real estate investment and development group, has started works on a 22,300 sqm office redevelopment in the heart of La Défense in Paris.
Latitude will provide 22,300 sqm of Grade A office space over eight floors and will offer occupiers a modern working environment. Its expansive floorplates – a rarity in a La Défense market dominated by tower blocks – will feature landscaped break-out areas, as well as state-of-the-art amenities for both tenant and public use. Latitude is scheduled to complete in Q2 2020.
Latitude is distinctive for its lateral design, conceived by the award-winning STUDIOS Architecture. The building will be highly visible in the La Défense market, situated adjacent to the La Défense ring road and close to the Centre of New Industries and Technologies (CNIT), a major convention centre and La Défense landmark.
Rémi Monglon, Principal and Head of France at Benson Elliot, commented: “After two years of hard work, alongside first class architects and developers, we are pleased to introduce Latitude. The property has a unique design, and upon completion will deliver efficient, top quality office space, with the highest environmental credentials, into a sub-market seeing limited new supply.”
“We are truly excited about this project and are confident that Latitude will make a significant contribution to the new, vibrant face of La Défense. We are offering our users highly flexible and new ways of working. Our aim is to expand what is possible within a working environment and enhance what this world-class business district has to offer.” said GCI Managing Director Sharon Raingold. “In an area where towers dominate the skyline, we believe the large, lateral floorplates of Latitude will encourage a less hierarchical and more forward-thinking business model, where innovation and collaboration can be celebrated,” Sharon continued.
La Défense is Europe’s largest business district and is home to over 500 companies, including multinationals and Fortune 500s. Following recent infrastructure investment, accessibility to public transport has significantly improved, with Latitude now linking directly to the CNIT and the main hub of La Défense.
Latitude will be built to the highest environmental standards and is set to receive CSR credentials including HQE ‘Exceptionnel’, BREEAM ‘Excellent’, Effinergie+, Well Core and Shell ‘ready’, Wiredscore Platinum.
Bouygues Bȃtiment Ile-de-France – Rénovation Privée has been engaged as general contractor and financing was secured from BNP Paribas and SCOR.
Benson Elliot, the UK-based private equity real estate fund manager, has acquired 100% of the units in an Italian real estate investment fund, ER Office Fund 3 (“EROF3”), which has acquired adjacent business parks in Segrate, northeastern Milan. EROF3 is managed by Europa Risorse SGR, a Bank of Italy regulated fund manager. The two business parks were purchased in separate transactions, from BNP Paribas SGR and from Toscanini Fund, managed by Generali Real Estate S.p.A. SGR.
Segreen Business Park, acquired from BNP Paribas SGR, comprises c. 27,000 sqm of grade A office space in two buildings, with parking for over 900 cars. The project was delivered to high environmental standards (LEED Gold and Platinum certifications) between 2011 and 2013. Segreen Business Park is over 90% occupied by a group of largely international corporates, including Kraft Heinz, Lenovo and Zimmer Biomet.
Nest Business Park, acquired from Toscanini Fund, managed by Generali Real Estate S.p.A. SGR, comprises 18,000 sqm of office space in three buildings, together with parking for over 500 cars, set within a beautifully landscaped environment in Segrate. Originally developed in the 1980s, the buildings were previously the Italian headquarters of Microsoft. Currently vacant, the property presents an opportunity for substantial refurbishment and integration with the popular and prominent Segreen Business Park.
Joseph De Leo, Benson Elliot Senior Partner, said: “We’ve been engaged in the Milan market for decades, but see a particularly compelling investment story right now, as growing demand for grade A office space confronts very limited new supply. We’re well positioned to capitalise on the opportunity given our local capabilities, and look forward to delivering some attractive new office accommodation into this increasingly strategic locale.”
Europa Risorse will implement the value-enhancement strategy, drawing on their deep local knowledge and extensive asset and development management skills. Nest will be redeveloped and integrated with Segreen, consolidating the two business parks to create a larger, better organised offering, with increased floor area. The finished product is expected to achieve LEED Gold certification, and provide state-of-the-art amenities including restaurants, a conference centre, a nursery and a gym.
Segrate is situated just 10km from Milan’s city centre and a few minutes from Linate International Airport. Linate will see over €150 million of investment in the near term, as the airport adds a new terminal. Segrate itself is seeing significant infrastructure investment, with €400 million in road and rail works planned (including the extension of the Metro to Segrate), in part to support the c. €1.4bn development of Westfield Milano set to open in 2021.