Property related transactions were one of the areas of activity that where our team members were actively involved through many different stages of the economic development in Russia. In 90-ies it included privatization related advisory and restructuring, financing of the upgrade projects and development of industrial areas. We were involved in the property transactions as advisors to local owners, as developers, owners and managers of the properties (offices), as part of the restructuring mandate for State TV and Radio Company of St Petersburg (5th Channel) we have carried restructuring and spin-off of part of their properties (mainly offices). Also all through the 90-ies we were actively involved with Lenmorzaschita, a state owned developer of the St Petersburg Dam and Ring Road in planning and arranging the project finance and, later, of the possible public private partnerships in order to attract private funding in addition to the public finances. Later these work was continued and quite a number of PPP projects implemented that became “show cases” of the PPP in Russia. As the markets developed the activity changed into more organized, structured and focused. In 1999 to 2001 we have created in partnership with one of the Finnish investment banking firms and further sold to property developer and investor property focused private equity vehicle, Russian Capital Management Oy that currently is running a 150 MEUR fund invested in properties in St. Petersburg. Also in 2001-2003 we acted as an advisor to JTI International as related to restructuring and further selling non-core properties in St. Petersburg. Later these, mainly office, properties formed a core of investment portfolio of the Swedish OMX listed Ruric AB.
From 2006 till 2015 we have acted as advisors to the EPI Fund I, a private equity fund invested in St Petersburg properties where we helped to acquire, structure and organize efficient management of the office and A-class warehouse properties, later we also helped to restructure management and optimize Moscow based private equity fund, Arista (offices and retail). We have assisted our Clients in exiting retail property portfolios of Nakhodka and Sportland retail chains, helped Kesko, a leading Finnish retailer to acquire multiple land plots and helped in structuring a property development alliance with Lenta, a leading Russian food retailer. We also worked with the leading St Petersburg property owners Imperia (Senator brand) and Greenpoint (largest owner of the industrial and converted from industrial offices in St. Petersburg) on planning and structuring possible exits and investment portfolios. In 2013-2014 we assisted Paroc in acquiring a number of properties that were joined into an industrial land plot that became a site of their factory in Tver region. Also in the course of 2013-2015 we have successfully assisted Atria in exiting their properties of Kampomos (I and II) in Moscow.
We also carried out numerous valuations and advisory cases related to property investments in many regions of Russia with a focus on Moscow and St Petersburg. Most of our M&A assignments also contained a separate property part either as a side mandate or as part of the transaction. Hence plenty of experience in offices, retail and industrial properties and related transactions was acquired.
Currently we are acting as advisors to the leading St Petersburg based property owners and investors in a very substantial retail project in St Petersburg.
October 7, 2013