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GIC makes two European investments in property, aircraft industry

GIC has agreed to acquire Tour Ariane in Paris for about 465 million euros.

SINGAPORE sovereign wealth fund GIC has made two investments - a 465 million euros (S$741.1 million) Paris office building and a significant minority stake in a Denmark-based company for an undisclosed amount - it announced in separate statements on Tuesday morning.

It will become a significant minority investor in Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC), which is said to be the world's largest regional aircraft lessor and the fourth-largest commercial aircraft leasing company with a fleet of 468 regional aircraft and a total asset base of US$8 billion.

The transaction will comprise a partial sale by the existing shareholders and new capital, and the transaction will be executed by an affiliate of GIC.

EQT VI, an investment fund by Swedish private equity group EQT Partners, will remain the largest shareholder and will continue to support NAC in solidifying its position as the global leader in regional aircraft leasing, while founder Martin Møller remains a significant shareholder and continues as chairman of the company.

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Said Choo Yong Cheen, chief investment officer of private equity at GIC: “NAC has a strong track record of growth and market leadership in a segment with secular growth drivers. As a long-term investor, we look forward to partnering with Martin Møller and EQT and supporting the future growth of the company."

Separately, GIC has also agreed to buy Tour Ariane, a 40-storey office tower with a gross lettable area of 64,500 square metres for about 465 million euros, from Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, a commercial real estate firm. 

Tour Ariane is located in the La Défense business district and is in the vicinity of two main transport hubs and amenities. GIC said it will also benefit from the Grand Paris project, an urban development project meant to improve transport connectivity. 

"Tour Ariane offers quality space at affordable rents," GIC said. "It presents multiple value creation opportunities over the long term, which GIC expects to capture by investing to enhance the asset."

It will be managed by Baumont Real Estate Capital. The transaction is subject to standard conditions precedent and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018.