Chemist Warehouse executive buys again

Six investors bid for 89 Kingsway pushing the land rate to $33,891 per square metre.

Chemist Warehouse co-owner Sam Gance outbid five investors to secure a high profile Glen Waverley shop at auction in December – spending $6.236 million.

Sam Gance paid $43 million for a Toorak home in 2021.

The result for 89 Kingsway (pictured, top) set a record suburb land rate; the 184 square metre Commercial 1 zoned site is opposite Century City Walk and The Glen shopping centres.

George Calombaris owned 15 Railway Parade North between 2014-2016.

The double storey building contains 368 sqm leased until 2027 to fast food retailer Grill’d.

The acquisition came 14 months after Mr Gance, who has been dating Real Housewives of Melbourne actress Janet Roach since 2016, outlaid $43m for a contemporary mansion on Toorak’s Lansell Road.

Stonebridge’s Nic Hage, Rorey James, Sarah Xi and Jacob Biviano were the agents; their result reflects a 2.66 per cent net passing yield.

Five registered groups didn’t get the opportunity to bid, Ms Xi said.

Of the six which did, four were from the agency’s Asia Practice team, she added.

“We are pleased with the depth of bidders, which provides an indication of demand for strip retail assets, the market clearly has confidence in the direction and resilience of asset class,” according to the agent.

Chemist Warehouse backers spend again

Also over the past 18 months, Chemist Warehouse executives have purchased properties in Kew, Richmond and Forest Hill – the latter, which the retailer occupied.

Business owners also control Fitzroy’s Kindness House in the heart of the Brunswick St retail strip, after picking it up in mid-2020, at the beginning of the national lockdown, for $12m (story continues below).

Grill’d Heatherton sold for $4.4 million in October.

“Kingsway continues to go from strength to strength as a retail precinct, with rents per sqm rivalling the likes of Church St, Brighton, and High St, Armadale,” Ms Xi said.

The Glen Waverley deal was sealed a month after a Grill’d backed restaurant at Heatherton, 11 kilometres south west of Glen Waverley, traded for $4.4m, reflecting a 4.23pc yield.

The King’s Centre at 52 Montclair Avenue, two holdings from 89 Kingsway.

Development upside

The Kingsway property has medium term development upside; on the south west corner of Montclair Avenue, near the King’s Centre, the agents said it could accommodate six storeys.

It is also 130 metres from the Glen Waverley train station, they added.

Elsewhere in the area, Jeff Xu’s Golden Age Group recently developed 536 apartments in three buildings on airspace over The Glen.

That developer is also behind a townhouse proposal to replace a former school in the suburb, 583 Ferntree Gully Rd.

Between 2014-2016, celebrity chef George Calombaris owned a prominent retail investment in the pocket too.

On 209 sqm at 15 Railway Parade North, on the north east corner of Euneva Avenue, he sold for $2.6m – an $800,000 profit.

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Marc Pallisco

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