Sentinel continues aggressive Queensland expansion

Sentinel has bought a Big W store in Atherton in North Queensland for $10.35 million.

Sentinel Property Group continues to expand its property holdings in North Queensland, with the purchase of a freestanding Big W in Atherton for $10.35 million.

The purchase comes after a number of acquisitions around the state, as well as the revelation that the group is making a bid to list on the Australian Stock Exchange through a takeover of the listed Unity Pacific Group.

Sentinel this week announced an offer to fund a buyback of all of the stapled securities in UPG (formerly the Trinity Property Group) that it does not already own.

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In July this year, Sentinel acquired 1,754,407 stapled securities in UPG, representing 4.9% of the UPG stapled securities.

Throughout 2015, Sentinel has indicated its intention to investigate market opportunities to list on the ASX.

We have … identified Atherton as a strategic investment location and maturing retail hub for the Atherton Tablelands

The move comes as Sentinel acquires the freestanding Big W at 8–20 Mabel St, Atherton, in Far North Queensland about 80km south west of Cairns.

The property features a lettable area of 4480sqm plus 173 car bays on a 1.113ha site and is fully leased to Big W until March 2021, with options until 2041.

This year Sentinel also purchased the Port of Airlie Maritime Terminal at Airlie Beach and the Woodlands Village Shopping Centre in Townsville.

The Atherton site is leased to Big W until at least 2021.

The Atherton site is leased to Big W until at least 2021.

Sentinel is the largest private owner of commercial property in the Mackay region, with six retail, industrial, office and land assets, and also owns two shopping centre properties in Emerald.

Sentinel managing director Warren Ebert says the company is pleased to be growing its presence in targeted locations throughout North Queensland and will continue to seek out new opportunities in the region.

“We have a positive outlook for the key regional centres of North Queensland and have identified Atherton as a strategic investment location and maturing retail hub for the Atherton Tablelands,” Ebert says.

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The acquisition of Big W Atherton continues Sentinel’s aggressive expansion in the retail sector, which has seen the company acquire eight new retail properties nationally in the second half of 2015.

Brisbane-based Sentinel owns and manages a portfolio of 36 retail, industrial, office, land and tourism properties, with total assets under management approaching $1 billion.

Big W Atherton is the latest addition to the growing Sentinel Countrywide Retail Trust, an open-ended pooled trust launched last year that now comprises a total of nine retail properties in Queensland and New South Wales.

The forecast first-year distribution for Big W Atherton to investors is 9.5% per annum (paid monthly and post interest rate/expense contingency).