Aware buys stake in Melbourne mall with development plan

Seventeen more buildings are planned for Sunshine Marketplace.

Aware Super, in a mandate with Altis Property Partners, is paying a speculated $65 million for a half-stake in Sunshine Marketplace, west of Melbourne.

The 34,153 square metre centre is trading on a yield of 5.79 per cent reflecting the 12.2 hectare block’s significant development upside.

The mall covers 28 per cent of the 12.2 hectare Sunshine block (outlined).

Challenger, on behalf of a partnership with the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, was the vendor; it paid $45.5m in 2013 as part of a $602m portfolio with a half stake in five more malls.

That seller was Vicinity, which still controls the balance of Sunshine Marketplace and manages it.

Altis recently paid $32.25 million for a Brisbane Trade Coast investment.

JLL’s Nick Willis and Sam Hatcher were the agents.

Aware and Altis last August teamed to create a $7 billion property investment platform.

Also this week, we are reporting Altis, for another fund, acquired a Brisbane industrial investment, outlaying $32.25m.

Development upside

Anchored to Big W, Village and Woolworths, Sunshine Marketplace at 80 Harvester Road is the suburb’s largest land holding, the agents said.

The shopping centre, which opened in 1997, covers less than a third of the site.

Eighty per cent of the income is derived from national brands, JB Hi Fi and McDonald’s amongst them.

There are also 1741 car parks.

A masterplan allows for an additional 190,578 sqm across 17 buildings on 11 ancillary blocks, including an 84-key serviced apartment complex, 10 storey, 13,000 sqm office and entertainment and leisure precinct.

Significant high density residential would also be permitted (story continues below).

“The transaction is consistent with Aware Real Estate’s focused investment strategy to target locations around existing and new infrastructure that we believe will drive long-term demand underpinning capital growth,” the group’s chief executive officer, Michelle McNally, said.

Sunshine, a major activity centre 12 kilometres from town, will be a depot for the Melbourne Airport Rail Link, due to open in 2029 (the suburb’s station is also about 600 metres from Sunshine Marketplace).

The shopping centre deal comes nearly three years since Assembly Funds Management and Cadence paid Sentinel $39m for the Sunshine North Homemaker Centre, on 6.1ha.

Another shopping centre sale

Mr Willis said there was an increase in retail sales activity at the end of 2022.

“However, the new year has commenced with constrained investment supply” he added.

The Sunshine Marketplace deal comes 10 days since IP Generation picked up a half stake in Perth’s Rockingham Centre from AMP Capital for $180m – a six per cent yield.

Vicinity controls the balance.

Also this month, we reported McDonald’s sold Oreana Property Group a 1.8ha tract earmarked to become the Cranbourne East Town Centre site, while MPG Funds Management snared a Dubbo homemaker centre.

In January, meanwhile, Ganellen Asset Management forked out $20m for Brisbane’s Marketplace Deagon.

That seller was Melbourne’s James Zhang.

The result reflected a 7.25pc return.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of