GPT selling over $140m of logistics assets to Wentworth Capital

Bob Johnston

GPT Group CEO Bob Johnston. Picture: James Croucher

Real estate private equity firm Wentworth Capital is again buying a portfolio of logistics assets from the listed GPT, with a deal in train for it to pay more than $140m for key assets in Sydney and Melbourne.

The company’s move mirrors a play it made late last year when it snared a $255m portfolio, also from GPT, as it built up its Sydney ­holdings.

GPT has been expanding in logistics. Last year, it said its joint venture with Canada’s Quadreal Property had expanded to $2bn. It has also built up substantial holdings and has a near $5bn industrial empire. A deeper shift into logistics has been a hallmark of departing GPT chief executive Bob Johnston’s period at the helm of the company.

But it has been selling off smaller assets, and Wentworth has been on the expansion trail, becoming one of the key players in last mile logistics since it was set up in 2019.

Bob Johnston

GPT Group CEO Bob Johnston. Picture: James Croucher

Wentworth has built up a series of holdings that are worth more than $1bn. The latest assets include Sydney properties at 83 Derby St in Silverwater and 64 Biloela St in Villawood, and a smaller complex in Port ­Melbourne.

The Silverwater warehouse and office facility is leased to IVE and sits in the area’s established occupier precinct to the southeast of the Parramatta CBD. It benefits from its proximity to the M4 Motorway.

The 17,000sq m facility was held at a fair value of $59.5m and has a weighted average lease expiry of about 2.5 years.

The other Sydney asset is an office and warehouse facility in Villawood’s occupier precinct. It sits to the southwest of Parramatta near the Hume Highway.

The 23,300sq m complex was held on a value of $51.5m and had a weighted average lease expiry of about four years. It is leased to VIP Plastic Packaging.

The Melbourne asset, 21-23 Wirraway Drive, Port Melbourne, has 7200sq m of space and was held at $28.5m. It includes a modern office and warehouse facility and is leased to Computershare.

The firm has been growing its empire since teaming with funds managed by US investment giant BlackRock to invest in last-mile logistics real estate in Australia, when it flagged plans to assemble a $1bn ­portfolio.

The venture, known as Urban Logistics Co, has been buying assets for several years, building a portfolio of small-scale warehouses on landholdings of more than 500,000sq m.

GPT sold two eastern seaboard industrial parks to the company last November.

The parties declined to comment.