Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and Boreal IM Joint Venture Acquires 165K SQM Prime Logistics Portfolio in Strategic French Markets

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and Boreal IM Joint Venture Acquires 165K SQM Prime Logistics Portfolio in Strategic French Markets

The Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan and Boreal IM joint venture (“JV”) has completed its latest strategic acquisition in the French logistics market – a 165,000 sqm portfolio of five, fully-let, logistics assets. The transaction marks the JV’s second investment in France, after the acquisition of a standing asset and development plot in Paris in 2023.

The assets are located in Lyon, Nantes, and Lille – core cities within the French logistics “Backbone” and “Atlantic Corridor” where there is a structural undersupply of logistics assets and limited potential to develop additional space. These investments align with the JV’s strategy of targeting assets in supply-constrained locations where occupier demand remains strong, and where there is the potential to improve rental levels in the mid-term.

The assets consist of:

  • Belleville: A 50,000 sqm asset north of Lyon, constructed in 2010, and fully leased to a pharmaceutical company as its main national logistics centre
  • Étoile sur Rhône: A 35,000 sqm facility built in 2018 located south of Lyon and leased to two French 3PLs fulfilling national and international contracts
  • Nantes: A 19,000 sqm, part temperature-controlled asset, fully let to a local 3PL which uses the asset to fulfil contracts for clients located in northwest France
  • Angers: Built in 2018, this 42,000 sqm asset is leased to a global contract logistics provider to serve central and western France
  • Lille: An 18,000 sqm facility located in Lille’s most established logistics cluster. Built in 2018 and fully leased to an international 3PL which has consolidated its regional operations in the asset

All the assets benefit from easy access to the main highways, including the A6 which connects Marseille to Lyon and Paris (Belleville, Étoile sur Rhône); the A1 connecting Lille to Paris (Lille); and the A11 that runs from Nantes to Paris (Angers, Nantes).

In line with the JV’s commitment to environmental and social responsibility, the intention is to collaborate with the tenants to enhance the ESG credentials of the assets. Initiatives include obtaining “Excellent” BREEAM certifications and conducting CRREM / net zero carbon analyses to direct decarbonisation works, such as the installation of photovoltaic systems and LED lighting.

Jenny Hammarlund, Senior Managing Director, Real Estate at Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, said: “This portfolio is a strategic acquisition for the JV, significantly growing our AUM in France and further diversifying our geographic presence. We now have the opportunity to work with a strong roster of tenants to implement ESG initiatives as we continue to build our best-in-class portfolio and create value through active asset management.”

Xavier Aubrun, Vice President at Boreal IM, commented: “This acquisition allows us to firmly establish the JV in France through a high-quality portfolio in key markets with strong fundamentals. We are pleased to demonstrate again our ability to execute throughout Europe and our commitment to the French market, a key target for us where we are expecting to grow our platform further. As the market is finding its new equilibrium, 2024 is set to be another busy year for our JV.”

Boreal and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan were advised by Clifford Chance, NOTER, CBRE, Etyo and PwC.