Vic buyer strikes first to buy Rocks Shopping Fair

14th Jan 2016
Adrian Ballantyne

A Victorian syndicate has trumped local investors to secure a South West Rocks shopping centre on the NSW north coast for $9 million.

The buyer, understood to be MPG Funds Management, snared the Coles-anchored Rocks Shopping Fair centre in one of the state’s first retail sales of the new year.

Boom time: Neighbourhood centres lead way in 2015 retail

The 4547sqm centre, managed by Clarence Property, is also home to other national retailers including Liquorland and The Reject Shop and lies about 85km north of Port Macquarie.

This established centre caters for the growing South West Rocks community, which is underpinned by a thriving tourist economy

CBRE’s Nick Willis and Craig O’Donnell sold the property for Westlawn Property Trust on a passing yield of 6.3%.

Willis says the sales campaign was keenly contested, with 11 private and institutional investors from three states making formal plays for the retail asset.

Rocks Shopping Fair in South West Rocks was last sold in 2004.

Rocks Shopping Fair in South West Rocks was last sold in 2004.

“This strong level of interest is testament to the depth of demand seeking to acquire neighbourhood shopping centres with strong fundamentals, regardless of their geographical location,” he says.

According to Clarence Property’s website, Westlawn bought the property for $8.4 million in 2004.

“Successfully trading since 2002, this established centre caters for the growing South West Rocks community, which is underpinned by a thriving tourist economy,” Willis says.

The sale provides a strong indication that Australia is in for another bumper year of sub-regional shopping centre sales, with investors continuing to look outside capital cities for strong buying opportunities.

Sales in the sub-regional shopping centre sector reached $2.8 billion in 2015, up almost $1 billion on the previous 12 months.

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