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Nordic property markets exceed EUR 40bn in 2020 despite corona

Press release -

Nordic property markets exceed EUR 40bn in 2020 despite corona

The Nordic property markets have recovered strongly from a dry second quarter and will reach EUR 41.5 billion in 2020, only 9 percent behind the record volume in 2019. A very active residential segment and several major deals in December are the main drivers, according to new figures from property advisor Pangea Property Partners.

“After a strong first quarter followed by close to zero activity in the second, momentum changed during the summer and the Nordic property markets have shown strength in the second half of the year. The number of deals is almost at the same level as last year and activity has picked up in most segments,” says Mikael Söderlundh, Head of Research and Partner at Pangea Property Partners.

Sweden and Norway the largest markets
The volume in Sweden fell 17 percent to EUR 18.3 billion in 2020, but it remains the largest property market in  the region. The volume in both Norway and Denmark ended up fairly close to EUR 9 billion, following a 27 percent increase in Denmark from last year. On the contrary, the volume in Finland fell by 24 percent to EUR 5.0 billion.  The total number of transactions in the Nordic market was just above 1,000 and the average deal size was EUR 41 million.

Transaction volumes 2020 Sweden      Norway      Finland      Denmark       Nordics   
Transaction volume (EURbn) 18.3 9.5 5.0 8.7 41.5
- change from 2019 -17% -3% -24% 27% -9%
Number of transactions (#) 410 260 150 200 1,020
- change from 2019 +2% +2% -30% 15% -2%
Average deal size (EURm) 45 36 33 44 41
Foreign buyers (%) 27% 13% 61% 62% 34%
Foreign sellers (%) 10% 8% 4% 48% 16%

Based on property transactions above EUR 5 million

Inflow of foreign capital
Despite restrictions in traveling, foreign buyers accounted for as much as 34 percent of the Nordic transaction  volume in 2020, and in Finland and Denmark the proportion was over 60 percent. Foreign sellers accounted for  only 16 percent of the volume, which gave a positive net inflow of capital to the region, for the fifth year in a row.

“The Nordic economies have performed well relative to the rest of Europe after the corona outburst. The Nordic property markets have proven to be very robust, and with the perception as a safe haven it remains attractive for international investors. The cross-border activity has been slowed down in 2020 due to the travel restrictions, but it is returning gradually,” says Bård Bjølgerud, CEO and Partner at Pangea Property Partners.

Large upswing for residentials
The largest property segment in 2020 was residentials accounting for 36 percent of the volume, a significant increase from 25  percent in 2019. The second largest segment was office accounting for 24 percent of the volume, followed by logistics accounting for 15 percent. Retail accounted for 8 percent, down from 11 percent last year.

“There has been a general shift towards typical core assets in the market with investors chasing secure and predictable cash flows. In addition, we have seen several sizeable acquisitions of development projects and building rights portfolios at the end of the year”, says Mikael Söderlundh.

The largest property transactions in the Nordic region in 2020 (all made in the second half of the year):

  1. Blackstone’s acquisition of 214 warehouse properties in Sweden from Castellum (SEK 18.1bn)1
  2. Heimstaden’s acquisition of residential company HD Ejendomme in Denmark from Niam (DKK 12.1bn)
  3. Balder’s acquisition of Karlatornet (50%) in Gothenburg and 10 other projects from Serneke (SEK 9.6bn)
  4. Fredensborg, Norwegian Property and Union Real Estate’s acquisition of Nordr (former Veidekke Eiendom) from Veidekke (NOK 8.75bn)
  5. Balder’s acquisition of property company Masmästaren in Sweden (SEK ~5bn)

1 Only SEK 5bn included in this year’s transaction volume, the remaining part subject to Castellum acquiring Entra

Strong year for Pangea
Despite a turbulent market, Pangea Property Partners has had a strong year in 2020. We have advised on more than 50 property transactions and advisory mandates with an underlying property value of EUR 3.1 billion across  the Nordics. For example, we advised on Serneke’s sale of Karlatornet and 10 other development projects for SEK 9.6 billion and the sale of Masmästaren for above SEK 5 billion, the two largest property deals in Sweden 2020. Balder was the buyer in both transactions. In Norway, we advised Möller Eiendom/Stokke Industri on the sale of Coop’s central warehouse for NOK 3 billion, the largest logistics deal ever done in Norway. We also advised Eiendomsspar on the sale of Tjuvholmen Allè 1-5, a prime office complex in Oslo’s most exclusive business area. In addition, we have advised on the largest hotel deal in the Nordics and several regional transactions across various segments.

“The Nordic property markets look as strong now as pre-corona. Low interest rates, weak currencies and a healthy financing market have given the transaction market a strong finish to 2020, which we believe will continue in 2021. Our order backlog for 2021 is record high illustrating the anticipated high activity next year,” added Mr. Bjølgerud.

Attachments

  • Chart: Nordic transaction volumes, 2008-2020
  • Chart: Nordic transaction volume split by geography and sectors, 2020
  • Chart: Share of foreign buyers in the Nordic countries, 2020
  • Swedish and Norwegian translations of press release
  • Photos

For more information:
Mikael Söderlundh, Head of Research and Partner
+46 73 770 77 90, ms@pangeapartners.se

Bård Bjølgerud, CEO and Partner
+47 484 08 080, bb@pangeapartners.no

Subjects


Pangea Property Partners is an independent advisory firm focusing on property related corporate finance and transaction services in the Nordics. The company has about 35 employees with offices in Oslo, Stockholm, and London. In addition, we have a strategic cooperation in Finland. Since 2010, Pangea Property Partners has advised on more than 450 transactions with an underlying property value above €35 billion. The mandates include property divestments and acquisitions as well as large corporate transactions, capital raisings and debt financing. 

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Pangea Property Partners is an independent Nordic corporate finance, project finance and advisory firm focusing on the real estate sector. The company has offices in Oslo and Stockholm with 44 employees, and a strategic partnership in Finland. Since 2010, Pangea has advised on +575 transactions with an underlying property value of €+45 billion. The mandates include property divestments and acquisitions as well as large corporate transactions, syndication projects, capital raisings and debt financing/refinancing.

Pangea Property Partners
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