Meyer Bergman on track to create €2bn pan-European last-mile logistics platform

19th May 2020
  • First pan-European last-mile logistics platform targeting single tenant assets
  • Crossbay already has secured over €500m of assets under management (AUM), which Meyer Bergman is on track to double over next 12 months
  • Current tenants include 3PLs and major e-commerce companies, such as Amazon

Meyer Bergman is creating a €2 billion platform allowing institutional investors to tap into surging demand for last-mile distribution centres, with the launch of Crossbay.

Industrial real estate has been one of the most popular property sectors over the lastfew years as retailers have adopted omni-channel formats and consumers have increasingly switched to on-line shopping. However, large warehouse occupiers remain sensitive to the economy – particularly for manufacturers of industrial goods.

Meyer Bergman’s last-mile logistics strategy is more insulated from GDP movementsfor several key reasons.

  • Developing new last-mile distribution hubs is extremely difficult, due to planning restrictions. Municipalities favour housing, exacerbating the current demand-supply imbalance.
  • Most goods distributed through last-mile hubs go direct to consumers – something likely to significantly increase post-COVID-19
  • Occupiers take long leases and pay a premium for the best locations becausespeedy access to customers gives them a competitive advantage

Headed by Marco Riva, who led more than €2 billion of deals while at Logicor, Crossbay is the first pan-European real estate platform targeting single tenant assetsin gateway cities.

Occupiers will benefit from Meyer Bergman’s global network of business partners, which includes many leading retailers, as well as the firm’s asset management expertise andspecialist market knowledge from its local teams.

While being a separate platform, Crossbay is an extension of Meyer Bergman’s urban mixed-use strategy which has managed more than €8 billion of assets across Europe. The company identifies value-add opportunities in core European locations, repurposing and repositioning assets to increase value.

Growth in investor interest in urban logistics has been underpinned by an imbalance between demand and supply. Increasing urbanisation, the considerable growth of online sales and the reluctance of urban planners to permit the building of warehouses over homes has exacerbated this gulf.

Marcus Meijer, chief executive of Meyer Bergman, said: “Demand from e-commerce, online grocery shopping and third-party logistics businesses has soared in recent years. This is a structural shift. Conviction investors rightly see a return premium given the lower level of risk in this property type coupled with continued growth in occupier demand.

“We are creating a long-term institutional platform that will work in parallel to our traditional value-add strategy. For the first time, pension funds will be able to access high quality assets, with grade A occupiers managed by an institutional-grade operator.”

Marco Riva, head of Crossbay and logistics at Meyer Bergman, said: “Online shopping will grow substantially across Europe, including in southern European markets such as Italy and Spain where e-commerce penetration has traditionally been lower.

“In addition, the just-in-time inventory models that failed to adequately supply consumers and governments during the COVID-19 pandemic will also be re-evaluated. This will all lead to a substantial growth in demand as Europe structurally realigns its retail and supply chain networks.”

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