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Unibail-Rodamco's €630M project receives approval; UK REIT to line up £200M IPO

* Unibail-Rodamco SE's €630 million Tours Sisters project in Paris' La Défense district received the green light from the head of a public inquiry, according to Property Investor Europe. The Tours Sisters will comprise a 219-meter, 52-story office tower and a 121-meter, 31-story building containing a 300-room hotel.

The municipalities of Courbevoie and Puteaux led an inquiry in 2016-end and have since issued a positive opinion without any objections to the substance of the project, the report noted, citing Le Parisien.

* LXI REIT plc intends to list on the premium segment of the main market of the London Stock Exchange with an IPO target of £200 million. The company is focused on investing in U.K. commercial property assets let on long inflation-linked leases of typically 20 to 30 years to expiration or first break.

The company plans to invest in a diverse range of sectors, including office, retail, leisure, industrial, distribution and alternatives, and will also focus on growth subsector investments like discount retailers, budget hotel operators and "last mile" distribution units linked to online retail.

UK

* Zoopla Property Group Plc agreed to acquire Hometrack.co.uk Ltd. for £120 million in a cash-free and debt-free deal. Hometrack is the U.K.'s leading provider of residential property market insights and analytics, according to a company release. Zoopla said the acquisition would create "the UK's most valuable residential property resource."

* The Universities Superannuation Scheme and Morgan Sindall Investments Ltd. launched a joint venture to invest £100 million in the U.K.'s supported living sector, IPE Real Estate reported. The Supported Housing Investment Ltd. Partnership may double in value to £200 million, subject to market conditions, and is targeting to deliver 500 purpose-built apartments to the sector.

* According to Deloitte's Belfast Crane Survey, construction in the commercial property sector of Belfast, Ireland, hit its highest rate in nearly 10 years, with many projects currently under construction despite the ongoing Brexit negotiations, The Irish Times reported. An estimated 573,527 square feet of new office space is expected to be completed by 2018 and more than 1,000 additional hotel rooms will be made available in the city.

Southern Europe

* Intu Properties Plc signed an exclusivity agreement with entities of Ivanhoé Cambridge Group to acquire the Xanadu shopping center in Madrid. Intu and TH Real Estate were the finalists for the sale, which is expected to fetch more than €500 million, according to a Jan. 13 report from Spanish daily Cinco Días, which cited sources familiar with the process.

If it goes through at that price, the sale would mark the highest figure ever paid for a Spanish retail mall, according to the report.

* Prime office rental growth in Spain is expected to show signs of a slowdown in 2017, however, rents in Madrid and Barcelona will rank among the strongest in Europe until 2019, Property Investor Europe reported, citing Capital Economics. Rents in Barcelona are predicted to climb an average of 4.5% during the 2017-to-2019 period, while a 3% rate of growth is predicted in the capital city, the report noted.

* The Wall Street Journal took a look at how commercial real estate sales in Italy hit a nine-year high in 2016, driven by investors seeking higher returns outside of Europe's biggest property markets. Real estate deal volumes in Italy, a small market compared to other countries in the region, climbed to €9.1 billion in that year, up from €8 billion the year before.

Finland and Sweden

* Avant Capital Partners completed the acquisition of 1,344 units for its joint Finnish residential platform with an unnamed U.S. investor, PIE reported. Avant signed an agreement to buy the units from Finland's VVO in December, the report noted, citing a company release. The vehicle currently manages 3,300 apartments spread across 110 assets and spanning more than 190,000 square meters.

* Castellum AB will purchase the 23,000-square-meter Torsplan 2 asset in Stockholm, which includes 18,800 square meters of office space, the company said in a release. Stockholm County Health Care Services is the primary tenant of the newly constructed building.

Germany

Pbb Deutsche Pfandbriefbank loaned €170 million to RFR Group and DC Values for the acquisition of the Leipziger Platz 14-16 office and retail complex in Berlin. The HGHI Holding GmbH joint venture purchased the complex, which has a total lettable area of approximately 22,500 square meters. The building is made up of 60% office space and 30% retail space, and also has apartments and storage facilities.

Middle East

Emaar Properties' and Meraas' joint venture Rove Hotels is opening its third branch in Dubai's Healthcare City, offering 286 rooms and venues for business events, Construction Week Online reported. A total of 10 Rove Hotels are expected to be opened in time for Expo 2020 Dubai, offering over 3,700 rooms in central locations across the city, according to the report.

Now featured on S&P Global Market Intelligence

Data Dispatch Asia-Pacific: Tokyo office market heyday on the wane: Tokyo's brisk office leasing market is approaching a tipping point in 2017 as a large amount of new supply comes online and demand softens.

The Daily Dose Europe, Real Estate edition, is updated as of 6:30 a.m. London time. Some links require a subscription. Articles and links are correct as of publication time.

Celestyn Wong contributed to this report.