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AMP nets $39m from management sale

By Chris Hutching

Friday 30th May 2003

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AMP is selling the property management business of its Australian-
listed diversified property trust for $39.3 million to institutional property investor Stockland Trust Group.

AMP Property Portfolio, managed by AMP Henderson, is an unlisted New Zealand wholesale fund with 24 properties valued at more than $482 million.

Last year it sold a half share of three retail properties to Australian Stock Exchange-listed AMP Diversified Property Trust (ADP), which has $1.8 billion of property assets. The three properties ADP bought were Botany Town Centre sold to ADP for $98.3 million, Manukau Supa Centa sold for $65.2 million, and Lynnmall Shopping Centre for $24.6 million.

In a new development this week, Australian investment fund, Stockland, announced a takeover offer for all of ADP. It also signed an agreement with AMP Property Management to set up a joint venture to own and manage the properties.

The trust, asset and property management businesses servicing ADP will be sold to Stockland.

AMP Henderson and AMP Shopping Centres will also provide IT and systems support to Stockland.

In addition, Stockland and AMP Henderson in New Zealand will enter a joint venture under which the groups will jointly asset-manage ADP properties and potentially pursue other opportunities in New Zealand.

AMP Henderson and AMP Shopping Centres will be paid $25 million and $14.3 million respectively for the businesses and for management systems, historical data and IT systems to ensure a smooth transition for the corporate and property-level services.

The move reflects the growing interest of Australian fund managers in New Zealand properties and closer involvement in local property management, particularly while the retail sector performs well. Retailers in the shopping centres can expect pressure on rentals as leases come up for re-negotiation.

AMP Property Portfolio general manager Murray Jordan said the sale was part of the fund's re-weighting of its retail holdings, which had been at about 60% when they should be closer to 40% or 50%, with 30% in commercial property, and the balance in industrial and residential property.

"As far as the New Zealand properties are concerned it's just business as usual," he said.

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