August 30, 2020 | real estate

Kuwait's Markaz in successful US industrial property exit


Kuwait Financial Centre (Markaz) has announced the sale of its key commercial property, Longley Commerce Center at Reno in Nevada, through its US real estate arm, Mar Gulf Management netting olid returns for its investors, exceeding initial estimates.

Launched in March 2018, the investment involves the acquisition and development of a greenfield land parcel into a 270,975 sq ft Class A industrial property.

Exceeding promised returns, Markaz continues to outperform with a weighted IRR of 17.6% across the current cycle further strengthening its track record.

The exit delivered a net internal rate of return to investors (IRR) of 17.9% percent and a net return on investment (ROI) of 49.3% percent. Despite the negative implications of Covid-19 across the various business sectors, both metrics comfortably exceeded initial estimates driven by strong market selection, excellent execution and a strengthened investment thesis.

Mar-Gulf Management President Sami Shabshab said: 'The sale of the property in Longley was in line with the initial investment strategy and was our fifth exit over the past one year.'

'Our remaining international real estate portfolio across the US and Europe is worth over $400 million and consists of eight active and three upcoming investments that have been fully sold to our investors,' he stated.

Markaz has been active in the US real estate market since 1977 with the launch of its first syndicated transaction. Since 1988, the firm has been conducting real estate transactions in the US through Mar-Gulf.

Over the past 30 years, Markaz and Mar-Gulf have been involved in the ownership and development of real estate properties in a variety of segments including industrial, retail, multifamily and office across the US with a total acquisition cost exceeding $1.65 billion.

Markaz Executive VP (Wealth Management and Business Development) Abdullatif Al Nusif said: 'We are very pleased with the results of our international real estate program and look forward to continue growing both in terms of size and geographical coverage. The investor appetite towards our program continues to grow and I would like to thank them for their continued trust and support.'

'Our focus remains set towards offering the right mix of products that will enable us to create value to our investors, shareholders and stakeholders. To conclude, the Covid-19 pandemic has no doubt created uncertainty in the market due to the unprecedented nature of the event, however this will create unique opportunities that we at Markaz are ready to capture it,' he added.

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