Stadium lands German and UK retail refinancing deals

Allianz leads €650m CentrO refinancing as RBS provides funding in UK

The Healey family’s property company, Stadium Group, has refinanced its German flagship shopping mall and UK retail portfolio.

German insurer Allianz joined  Aareal and Helaba to provide a €650m loan for CentrO, one of Germany’s biggest shopping centres, in Oberhausen in the Ruhr.

Stadium Group developed CentrO and sold a 50% stake to Canada Pension Plan in May 2011 for an equity investment of €270m.

The loan is Allianz’s third commercial real estate financing, but the first time it has lent side by side with banks. The insurer provided €325m, the lion’s share of the facility, while Aareal and Helaba contributed €162.5m each.

Allianz’s real estate lending is targeting fixed-rate, seven-to-10- year loans. German banks have moved away from this type of financing in recent years to five-year floating-rate loans.

But on the CentrO funding “the lenders are in full alignment on maturity and fixed rate”, said Helmut Mühlhofer, Allianz Real Estate’s head of debt and capital markets.

CentrO is valued at €1.3bn,  giving a 50% loan-to-value ratio. Barclays and Santander acted as arrangers for the financing with Barclays co-ordinating the structuring. Allianz’s loan is shared among a syndicate of the insurers’ societies.

This April, it provided €230m of financing for the Gropius Passage shopping centre in Berlin, Germany’s largest shopping centre. Its first deal was a €315m loan on Deutsche Bank’s Frankfurt HQ, owned by a closed-ended fund run by DWS.

The loan for CentrO will pre- pay bondholders in the DECO 15 Pan Europe 6 CMBS, ahead of its maturity in April 2014.

In the UK, Royal Bank of Scotland has refinanced a major part of the Stadium Group’s secured retail portfolio, in a deal led by RBS regional real estate finance director Stuart Heslop.

Stadium is a long-standing RBS regional property client. With Paul Sykes, Eddie Healey turned a derelict site outside Sheffield on the M1 into Meadowhall shopping centre.