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Mar, 20 2018

Blackstone to buy 85% in Nitesh’s Pune mall for Rs 300 crore

Blackstone entered the retail space in the country less than two years ago by setting up a fully owned subsidiary, Nexus Malls.

The world’s largest private equity firm Blackstone is set to buy an 85% stake in southern property developer Nitesh Estates’ mall in Pune for about Rs.300 crore.

New York-based Blackstone, which is building a portfolio of shopping malls as part of its bet on rent-yielding real estate, will acquire shares held by Goldman Sachs in ‘Nitesh Hub’. Nitesh will retain the remaining 15% in the 1-million sq ft mall. This will be Blackstone’s third partnership deal with a Bengaluru developer after striking investments with Embassy Group and Salarpuria Sattva for tenanted office spaces.

According to the sources, Blackstone was likely to re-purpose Nitesh Hub (formerly known as Koregaon Park Plaza), bringing in a bigger mix of offices — especially co-working spaces — in the tenancy mix.

International property consultants CBRE advised on the transaction. When contacted, Blackstone and Nitesh Estates declined to comment.

Goldman Sachs is exiting the nearly three-year-old investment with a gain of over $10 million, or Rs 70 crore, sources added. As per the earlier reports,  Nitesh Estates was in talks with China’s Fosun Group for a capital infusion of about Rs 800 crore at the entity level.

Blackstone entered the retail space in the country less than two years ago by setting up a fully owned subsidiary, Nexus Malls. It has been mopping up stake in retail assets in recent past, which include malls such as Treasure Island in Indore, Elante Mall in Chandigarh, Seawoods Grand Central in Navi Mumbai from L&T, and the Alpha One in Amritsar and Ahmedabad. More than $724 million was pumped into the retail assets by the PE firms in the first six months of the fiscal, compared to $1.6 billion witnessed between 2015 and September 2017, according to data from independent property consultancy JLL.

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