Peel Group acquires major shareholding in leading UK shopping centre owner Capital Shopping Centers Group

Peel Group announced it had gone into an agreement that will see it acquire a major shareholding in Capital Shopping Centres Group Plc (CSC). Capital Shopping Centres Group plc is the leading UK shopping centre owner. Its majority stake will be acquired by Peel Group via an equity investment of £75 million and the transfer of ownership of the £1.65 billion Trafford Centre, Manchester.

The deal will give Peel 19.9% shareholding in CSC and John Whittaker will become Deputy Chairman of its board, in addition to his current role as Chairman of the Peel Group.

The Trafford Centre will join CSC’s 13 shopping centre assets, giving Peel significantly greater interests in the retail property market via a portfolio of many of the UK’s top retail property assets. These include: the Arndale Centre, Manchester; Lakeside, Thurrock; Metrocentre, Gateshead; Eldon Square, Newcastle; Braehaead, Glasgow; and The Mall at Cribbs Causeway, Bristol.

John Whittaker said: “The transaction is part of the Peel Group’s long term, ongoing strategy to broaden its investments in many diverse sectors through partnerships and co-investment with complementary businesses. It follows successful partnerships with RREEF at Peel Ports, Vancouver Airport Services at Peel Airports, Covanta at Ince Park and most recently with SIS Live at Peel’s MediaCityUK project.”

The deal does not affect the day-to-day running of The Trafford Centre and the existing management team and centre staff will remain in place.

John Whittaker added: “It is business as usual at the Trafford Centre. The strength of the Centre lies not only in its unrivalled retail and leisure experience, but also in its first rate management and excellent staff. The Trafford Centre remains one of Peel Group’s prized assets under the new ownership structure, which gives us the additional opportunity to benefit from added geographical spread of high quality assets in the wider UK retail property market.”

The Peel Group is a leading infrastructure, transport and real estate enterprise in the UK with assets owned, under management, in excess of £6bn. In the North West, the Group’s proposed £50bn regeneration initiative for the Ocean Gateway spanning the next 50 years, aims to create an integrated approach to planning and delivery of major projects in the region which stretches over 50 miles, encompassing the North West’s great cities of Manchester and Liverpool.

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