Holtzbrink portfolio completely clear

Doughty Hanson’s real estate arm has sold Handelsblatt Headquarters, a publishing office located in Düsseldorf, to IXIS AEW Europe, a French based real estate manager, for over €40m.

The sale means that Doughty Hanson has now sold all the assets in the Holtzbrinck Portfolio it acquired in January 2003 from German publishing group Georg von Holtzbrinck. This latest sale, the 12th from Doughty Hanson & Co European Real Estate I, made a 2.8x return.

The fund, which closed in 2000 on €500m, now has nine investments remaining, and has to date returned to investors over 143% of cash invested by the fund, representing an overall return of 3.1x and a gross IRR of 41%. In July 2006, Doughty Hanson closed Doughty Hanson & Co European Real Estate II on €560m.

The Holtzbrinck Portfolio was the fourth transaction by the fund in the ‘Solutions for Corporates’ programme, a Doughty strategy which involves partnering with corporates to create value from under-utilised company-owned property or solve complex property or occupational issues.

John Howard, head of Doughty Hanson & Co European Real Estate, said: “The Handelsblatt Headquarters is a good example of how to create a win-win situation by our Solutions for Corporates programme. The sale and lease back monetised fixed capital for Georg von Holtzbrinck Group when required and enabled Doughty Hanson to create value through selective enhancement measures and improvements in property operation.”