Barings has acquired an office refurbishment opportunity in a prime location at 163 rue Saint-Maur in Paris, France, from Groupe Financiere JL. The company intends to fully reposition and upgrade the property once it receives vacant possession, in order to meet the demand post-COVID for high quality, sustainable low rise buildings with strong amenities.
Located on the corner of 163, rue Saint-Maur and Rue Darboy and originally constructed as a school in 1875, the building has a distinctive historic facade. The building has been used as an office since 1995 and comprises c. 2,600m² of lettable space across five floors. Around 1,000m² of the property is configured as workshops and showrooms for the current sole tenant, a luxury fashion brand that has been based there since 2004 and whose lease expires at the end of 2021. The finished office will be to a Grade A standard and will maximise the impact of the building’s distinctive architecture. The building’s 70m facade affords plenty of natural light, which promotes occupier wellbeing. A key focus for Barings will be to improve the property’s ESG credentials, targeting a minimum BREEAM / HQE excellent.
Severine Maumy-Laffineur, Managing Director and Country Head Real Estate France at Barings, commented: “This transaction gave us an exciting opportunity to undertake a full refurbishment of an unusual and historic property and reposition it into a Grade A office. With a focus on high-quality office and amenity space, occupier wellbeing and excellent environmental credentials, we have designed this building to meet the specific demands of the modern occupier in a post COVID world. This burgeoning, sought-after area in the east of the city has established itself as a popular hub, especially among start-ups and fashion brands, as well as more traditional occupiers in part due to a healthy mix of office space and leisure amenities. Our expert team on the ground continues to look for further opportunities in Paris following the recent refurbishment and successful sale of 9, Rue du Helder. With Nexity, we have a trusted partner that we have worked with before, and Axel Schoenert Architectes, we are confident that this redevelopment will be of a high standard.”
Gunther Deutsch, Head of Transactions Europe at Barings, added: “This transaction underlines our belief that there is continued robust demand for newly repositioned Grade A offices. Refurbishment and development opportunities such as this one remain a key area of investment for us both in France and across our other target geographies across Europe, where we can utilise our expert on the ground local teams to source and deliver projects and drive returns for our investors. We are also targeting further transactions in purpose-built student accommodation and Build to Rent as we aim to reach our European investment target of €2bn in 2021.”