Avignon Capital, the European property investment firm and asset manager has completed the sale of the Ampere asset in Berlin to RFR Holding for a purchase price in excess of €80m.
The Ampere building is a unique listed property built in 1926 and is a former electricity transformer station (“Umspannwerk”), which was converted into offices in 2010. The 11,678 sqm building is located in Prenzlauer Berg, an area widely regarded as a ‘tech-cluster’ in Berlin, and increasingly popular with young creative companies.
Avignon acquired the building on behalf of a private client in Q3 2016 and this sale marks the completion of a successful asset management strategy to lease out vacant space and create a highly desirable work environment. Significant capital was invested into an extensive capex programme, which included improvements such as maximising undeveloped lettable space by adding mezzanine levels, opening up the basement area for workspace and improving M&E infrastructure.
The newly refurbished building has achieved 100% occupancy as it is now fully let to GetYourGuide, a leading tech company who agreed to a long lease to take the entire campus to create their global headquarters.
Patrick Flaton, CEO at Avignon Capital said: “The sale of Ampere concludes the 3-year business plan to create a vibrant modern campus in which we were able to deliver returns that exceeded our original business plan.
Avignon identified an opportunity in 2016 to acquire a building with excellent upside potential and we are delighted that our asset management vision has proved successful and delivered a building fit for the modern-day occupier whilst retaining the historic character.
The Ampere building is an important historic building and this sale marks the next stage in the building’s lifecycle.
Furthermore, this transaction reinforces that active asset management capabilities can deliver superior returns and we are pleased to have achieved a strong result for our client. The proceeds from this sale will be reinvested and we are actively looking for more opportunities in the Berlin market.”
Dr. Alexander Koblischek, authorized signatory of RFR Holding GmbH said: “This extraordinary property fits wonderfully into the RFR portfolio and represents the trendy location of Berlin: a historically striking building with modern loft areas and an unusual tenant fit-out”.
Avignon Capital will be retained as asset manager at Ampere.
Avignon was advised by BCLP, Warth & Klein Grant Thornton and Celexis.