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IWG to pursue master franchise model; UK property deals down 31% YOY in H1

* Shared-office provider IWG PLC is looking to emulate a "McDonald's-style franchising model" in the next two to three years that would entail master franchise deals to operate flexible workplaces under the IWG brand, London's Financial Times reported. Earlier in 2019, the company had been in talks to sell off parts of its business.

Now the company is looking to replicate a master franchise deal it agreed in Japan whereby it sold its Japanese arm for £320 million to TKP, which will operate the spaces under IWG's brands. The move is meant to simplify its business and boost growth as it competes with rival WeWork Cos. Inc., the publication added, citing IWG CEO Mark Dixon.

* Property transactions in the U.K. declined 31% year over year to €23.4 billion in the first half as a result of Brexit-related uncertainty, IPE Real Assets reported, citing Real Capital Analytics.

The European retail transactions volume faltered by 51% to €12.6 billion and is set to end 2019 with its worst record since 2009, according to the report.

* London accounts for the highest flexible office stock in Europe at 11.8 million square feet, with Paris in second place at 4.7 million square feet, Property Week reported, citing CBRE research.

* Portuguese lender Novo Banco SA signed agreements for the sale of a portfolio of real estate assets known as Project Sertorius, and for the sale of a portfolio of real estate properties and nonperforming loans dubbed as Project Albatroz. Project Sertorius has a gross book value of €487.8 million and comprises 195 properties, while Project Albatroz has a gross book value of €308 million at the bank's consolidated level.

UK

* Portsmouth City Council has acquired the Cosham-based Lakeside North Harbour office complex from Northwood Investors for £138 million, The News reported. The transaction, which comprises a 120-acre site including offices, retails units and the Village Hotel, is expected to generate an aggregate financial return of £22 million over a 35-year period, according to the report. The council will use a loan to pay for the site.

* BE Offices, which operates more than 20 serviced workspace locations across the U.K., has appointed Rothschild to advise on financing options including a potential £200 million sale, according to PW.

Germany

* Real I.S. AG acquired two fully leased adjacent buildings in Technologiepark in Bremen for an undisclosed price. The assets comprise a six-story, roughly 5,200-square-meter building and another six-story, roughly 8,500-square-meter building.

* Tectaplan Group bought a fully leased property in Geretsried in the Munich region from a joint venture between Wander Immobilien and Aue for an undisclosed price, Property Magazine International reported. The property offers more than 1,600 square meters of rental space including office, warehouse and gallery space.

France

* Private equity firm KSL Advisors LLC, or KSL Capital Partners LLC, acquired The Hôtels d'en Haut Group, or Les Hôtels d’en Haut, through an affiliate for an undisclosed sum. The target company operates five boutique hotels in leisure markets across France.

Netherlands

* A Cedar Capital Partners-led consortium has acquired the 120-room Lloyd Hotel in Amsterdam for €45 million, Europe Real Estate reported. The roughly 8,300-square-meter hotel was owned by private investor Rocco Veenboer.

Africa

* South Africa-based Hyprop Investments Ltd. and AttAfrica Ltd. agreed to sell their stakes in the Manda Hill Shopping Centre in Zambia as part of Hyprop's move to slash its exposure to African investments. Both companies own a 50% stake each in the 42,000-square-meter mall, and Hyprop owns a 37.5% stake in AttAfrica.

The company noted that the sale price is in line with the asset's valuation as at Dec. 31, 2018. Hyprop is also in talks to sell its remaining interests in African shopping malls.

The Daily Dose Europe, Real Estate edition has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. London time. Some external links may require a subscription. Links are current as of publication time, and we are not responsible if those links are unavailable later.