sophiewickwar, Author at Verdion

Verdion secures Bas Warehousing for strategic Netherlands site

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Verdion has leased 9,000 sq m at its newly-acquired site in Roosendaal in the Netherlands to Bas Warehousing for hazardous goods storage.

Verdion acquired the site for €17 million in an off-market deal in 2020 – its first asset in the Netherlands and part of a €300m investment programme focused on last mile opportunities in Northern Europe for its Verdion European Logistics Fund 1 (VELF 1).

The site already includes a facility for Imperial Group and an adjacent land plot with permission for a further 10,000 sq m of new build warehouse space, which Verdion will start developing speculatively later this year.

De Lobel & Partners advised Verdion.

Verdion brings Woodlands Group to iPort

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One of the UK’s largest, privately-owned logistics companies Woodland Group, has taken a 195,000 sq ft warehouse at iPort, Verdion’s multimodal logistics hub in Doncaster.

The new fulfilment and distribution facility will be the latest addition to Woodland Group’s existing footprint across five locations in Yorkshire and enables its growth of employment in the Yorkshire region by 35%. It is part of a strategic move to service the growing needs of existing and recently won new business in the packaging industry, will offer Woodland’s carbon-conscious supply chain solutions and deliver access across the UK and direct services into Europe.

iPort is the UK’s most advanced multimodal facility, spanning 800 acres with 52 MVA power, close to junction 3 of the M18 in Doncaster. Already home to CEVA Fellowes, Lidl, Kingsbury Press and Amazon, its on-site rail freight terminal takes daily services to/from Southampton, Felixstowe and Teesport with more routes across the UK being planned.

Alongside its programme of speculatively-developed space at iPort, Verdion’s masterplan also includes development-ready sites for units of up to 800,000 sq ft that can be built to suit specific occupier requirements.

John Clements, Executive Director at Verdion, said: “The combination of high-quality warehousing and on-site rail services is increasingly attractive to businesses like Woodland Group, who are successfully building their businesses while focussing on environmentally-conscious supply chains. Demand for well-connected, well-resourced logistics space continues to grow and the ability to make road and rail connections across the country and into Europe from this central hub is increasingly attractive.”

Kevin Stevens, CEO of Woodland Group, commented: “Our new Doncaster site represents our great commitment to Yorkshire and the surrounding area and our continued investment into environmental supply chain solutions to aid our clients in cutting cost and carbon footprint. Its fantastic location makes it an ideal international hub plugging into our global supply chain offering as well as a solid addition to our full domestic operations through our own sites and equipment across the UK. Our Doncaster facility boasts state-of-the-art technology and our full digital offering alongside its conscious and innovative solutions to domestic and international fulfilment and distribution, thus offering both UK and overseas clients full access to the vast opportunities emerging in the UK and surrounding markets post Brexit.”

Verdion European Logistics Fund 1 acquires strategic Kassel logistics park

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Equity Estate Group has sold a strategic logistics park on the outskirts of the German town of Kassel to Verdion European Logistics Fund 1 (VELF1) for EUR 28 million. The park is situated in the Lohfelden logistics hotspot just outside Kassel, strategically located on the  A7 highway in Central Germany – the country’s longest autobahn and an important north-south route.

The property was held by Equity Estate Group for almost 15 years, forming part of the Queristics portfolio which was raised in 2005. In 2018 Equity Estate recapitalised the portfolio. In 2019 a property in the Netherlands was sold, followed by the second divestment of a logistics building in Willebroek, Belgium in 2020. With the sale of the Lohfelden property the recapitalisation of 2018 will be fully repaid.

This transaction is the fifth and largest acquisition so far for Verdion European Logistics Fund 1 (VELF1) SCSp, which held its final close in September 2020 and is focussed on urban logistics assets in edge-of-town or infill locations that facilitate swift product delivery to major cities/towns, meeting the last-mile requirements. It is targeting value-add/core-plus investments in Germany, the Nordics, Benelux and other select markets across Europe.

The 58,307 sqm plot currently comprises 16,046 sqm of warehousing and 3,852 sqm office/ commercial spaces in three buildings. Two are leased for a commercial vehicle parts centre, agricultural dealership and central warehouse. The other tenant specializes in thermoplastic extrusion. The acquisition also includes additional land with potential for a new warehouse of around  6,000 sqm plus 500 sqm office space and a 1,228 sqm mezzanine creating a total lettable area of 7,920 sqm in line with current zoning plans.

Florian Stöbe, Verdion Head of Investment – Germany said: “This asset is exactly in line with our value-add/core+ strategy: a site with great potential in one of the country’s most important logistics hotspots, combined with long term commitments from existing tenants. The intention now is to commence speculative development to meet continuing demand for high quality space from ecommerce occupiers in particular– an approach the fund is adopting across other invested locations.”

CBRE and Baker McKenzie advised Equity Estate Group in this transaction. Verdion was advised by REC Partners and GSK Stockmann.

Verdion supports South Yorkshire Freeport bid

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Verdion is supporting the South Yorkshire Freeport bid, aiming to make the area the largest advanced manufacturing hub in Europe and putting it at the heart of world-class innovation.

If the bid – which was submitted on 5 February – is successful, South Yorkshire will become one of ten new freeports across the UK. Once established, the freeport would help build on South Yorkshire’s longstanding reputation for innovation and excellence, and further establish the region as a hub for global trade and investment.

The Freeport, backed by key industry figures and politicians, centres around Doncaster Sheffield Airport and Verdion’s iPort logistics hub – which have substantial plans for growth – major manufacturers including Sheffield Forgemasters and Liberty Steel, and more than 360 hectares of land primed for development (at GatewayEast, Junction36 and iPort).

New modelling suggests a Freeport in the South Yorkshire would:

  • Create 28,700 new jobs
  • Increase wages by at least east 19% (due to a focus on advanced manufacturing)
  • Add £169m to the South Yorkshire economy every year
  • Boost imports by £306m and exports by £410m
  • Unlock or accelerate over £500m of investment
  • Transform the Sheffield City Region into a net exporter of goods by 2029

Michael Hughes, CEO of Verdion – which is responsible for Doncaster’s iPort logistics hub – commented: “A inland freeport in South Yorkshire would be a huge boost – for trade, development, investment and jobs. Its location at the heart of the country with so much critical infrastructure and space for future growth already in place offers enormous potential.”

Robert Hough, Chair of Peel Airports Group which includes Doncaster Sheffield Airport said: “Ports and airports are well known as hubs for global trade and investment., Freeport status would only enhance that. By bringing together the UK’s first strategic rail port for a decade at iPort and one of the longest runways in the UK with capacity to grow at Doncaster Sheffield Airport. Peel, Harworth and Verdion have proven track records in delivering transformational projects, helping to create jobs and opportunities for local people.”

Sheffield City Region Mayor Dan Jarvis said: “Establishing a freeport will help our region’s businesses and universities export ideas, goods and services across the world, supporting our ambitions for a new era of prosperity and a stronger, greener and fairer economy for South Yorkshire after the coronavirus pandemic. It will help to unlock our region’s potential and create opportunities for people, places and businesses.

“Our region has incredible strengths in research and innovation and businesses capable of substantial growth. Government must now back our bid to establish a freeport to generate the jobs, training and investment needed to deliver prosperity for people and businesses across the region and the North.

“This is an opportunity for government to show its commitment to levelling up and unlock South Yorkshire’s potential.”

South Yorkshire Freeport’s backers

Sheffield Forgemasters

Liberty Steel

McLaren Automotive

Hird Group

Peel L&P

Doncaster Sheffield Airport



Hird Group

Advanced Manufacturing Park

Sheffield, Doncaster, Barnsley & Rotherham Chambers of Commerce

Harworth Group

Sheffield City Region Mayoral Combined Authority

Sheffield City Region LEP

Doncaster and Barnsley Councils

South Yorkshire International Trade Forum




Verdion expands asset management team to support growing portfolio

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Verdion has appointed Valerie Setz as Asset Manager to assist in managing its growing portfolio of real estate  assets. Setz joins from VGP where she was a property manager, and prior to that worked for Postcon Service GmbH.

Since 2013 Verdion has created a €1.5 billion European logistics portfolio comprising new build and value-add redevelopment projects across Germany, the UK, the Nordics, Benelux and the Czech Republic.

Based at Verdion’s new Düsseldorf office, Setz will manage assets across all these territories, excluding the UK, and report to Director – Asset Management, Simon Walter. Her role will include working closely with Verdion team members – from incorporating new assets into the firm’s portfolio through acquisition or transition of completed developments; to day-to-day business planning, management and reporting; rent renewals, lease renewals and regears, and overseeing larger projects.

Simon Walter, Director – Asset Management, at Verdion said: “The challenge of managing a diverse and growing portfolio such as this is the range of skills needed maximise investment returns. A thorough grounding in technical management, driving cash flow and reporting is essential, but we also place great importance on good relationships with our occupiers and value people who can see the bigger picture and the value of larger capital projects to this process. Valerie’s experience makes her a great fit for our business as it continues to grow and we’re delighted to welcome her to the team.”

Derby Cycle chooses Verdion for new North German headquarters and plant

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Verdion has been chosen by bicycle manufacturer Derby Cycle as the developer for its new 32,230 sq m headquarters and plant which will expand the company’s presence in northern Germany.

The new facility will be funded and developed under a venture between Verdion and Canadian pension fund Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP).

It will be located on a 63,000 sq m plot in the Ecopark Emstek industrial estate and open its doors in 2022, offering state-of-the-art production facilities as well as an inspiring work environment with open offices and working spaces.

Another highlight will be the new Kalkhoff brand world, where Germany’s leading e-bike brand will showcase new models directly at the factory with advice, test drives on a dedicated test track on site and information about the brand and history.

The new building will provide 26,500 sq m of production and storage, 5,730 sq.m. of office and communal accommodation and 510 parking spaces. Verdion is targeting a DGNB Gold sustainability certification for the building on completion. It will link to Derby Cycle’s existing 25,000 sq.m. logistics facility on the adjacent plot, which Verdion completed in 2015. Work has recently started on site.

André Banschus, Executive Director of Verdion, adds: “Even before COVID-19, bicycle manufacturers were looking for more ways to respond to demand. The global sustainability movement has accelerated green city infrastructure projects and sales have significantly increased in recent years.

“We are pleased to be delivering a second project for Derby Cycle, not only demonstrating our development expertise in complex manufacturing, but working closely with our partners to put in place the funding and lease structures needed to help Derby Cycle exploit this opportunity for growth.”

Ecopark Emstek is located directly on the A1 motorway linking the Baltic Sea to the French border near Saarbrücken via several North Sea ports as well as the Rhine Ruhr metropolitan area. The municipality of Emstek borders Cloppenburg, the county capital with over 35,000 inhabitants. It is located 60 kilometres south-west of the Hanseatic city of Bremen.

Verdion and HOOPP regularly partner on the financing, development and management of specialist logistics and production facilities across Europe, with a portfolio of over €1.2 billion GAV created over the last seven years.

On completion of the building, Verdion will continue to work with Derby Cycle as HOOPP’s asset manager. List Bau is the general contractor, Phase 5 the project architect.

Verdion Airpark Berlin changes hands

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In a deal confirmed this week, Verdion AirPark Berlin has been sold by Patrizia to CBRE Global Investors following strong bidding from a number of parties keen to acquire this outstanding logistics park.

Since the site was acquired in January 2015 three phases of logistics facilities have been completed and leased, with businesses attracted by the location 30 minutes from Central Berlin and the high quality warehousing Verdion has developed and managed on Patrizia’s behalf.

Phase 1 of the park was completed in 2016, with a total of 317,500 sq ft (29,500 sq m) occupied by food delivery service Bringmeister, metalworking company PUK, and international logistics group Dachser SE.

Phase 2 – 238,500 sq ft (22,150 sq m) – was completed in 2018, with half of the space leased to DÜRKOP GmbH, an auto repair parts supplier for many leading car brands, and the other half leased to Streiff & Helmold, a railroad services provider.

More recently Verdion leased a second building on the park to Dachser SE, a 107,500-sq-ft (10,000 sq m) logistics facility, and the final phase of development is now complete with four new buildings brought forward speculatively, each offering 54,000 sq ft (5,000 sq m) of space.

Michael Hughes, CEO of Verdion, said: “Against a backdrop of significant e-commerce sector growth, the fundamentals that originally made this site an attractive development opportunity still hold true. At the same time, Airpark offers very high-quality buildings designed to meet occupier requirements for years to come. The park’s potential is reflected in the pricing achieved, with the outcome for our partners Patrizia significantly exceeding expectations.”