Baker McKenzie acts as property investor funds blockbuster deal

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Baker McKenzie has confirmed that it was involved in raising money to fund a blockbuster deal between Australian and American property investors.

The global firm successfully acted as underwriter counsel to UBS and Moelis Australia on the $276m capital raising by Centuria Metropolitan REIT (CMA) and as underwriter counsel to Moelis Australia on the $100m capital raising by Centuria Capital Group (CNI). The raisings will help fund CMA’s $645m acquisition of four office properties from Hines Global REIT.

For the CMA capital raising, $79m is being raised via an institutional placement and $197m is being raised via an accelerated non-renounceable entitlement offer (ANREO).

CNI, which has a 23.4% stake in CMA, will use the proceeds of its raising to make a $20m offer to CMA for the acquisition. The offer will also fund CNI's participation in the CMA raising.  The CNI raising is made up of a $79.7m institutional placement and a $20.3m ANREO.

Launched in December 2014, CMA has become Australia’s largest ASX-listed metropolitan office REIT. It has $1bn in assets under management. ASX-listed CNI is a property funds manager with $4.9bn in assets under management.

The equity raising will enable Centuria to acquire high-quality office assets and improve the quality and scale of its portfolio, said Baker McKenzie partners Lauren Magraith and Antony Rumboll, who led the firm’s team on the deals. UBS and Moelis Australia are long-standing clients of the firm, they said.

Baker McKenzie lawyers Daniel McGuiness and Francisco Widjojo assisted Magraith and Rumboll.