Canada Pension May Buy Stakes in More Land Securities’ Assets

Canada’s second-biggest retirement fund may buy more stakes in Land Securities Group Plc’s U.K. assets after acquiring part of the Victoria Circle project near Buckingham Palace today.

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board will discuss further opportunities with Land Securities, the U.K.’s largest real estate investment trust, after the joint-venture deal for Victoria Circle in London is completed, said Graeme Eadie, senior vice president for real estate investments at the Canadian fund.

“We’ll explore with them what other opportunities might work for both parties,” Eadie said today in a telephone interview. “They’re a very high-quality group and we’d like to do more with them but we haven’t taken the conversation beyond that.”

Canada Pension, the world’s third-biggest net buyer of real estate last year, has C$14.4 billion ($14.5 billion) of property investments including shopping malls in Australia, Brazil, Germany, the U.K. and the U.S. among its C$152.8 billion of total assets as of Dec. 31, according to financial statements. Land Securities said today it sold the 5.5-acre (2.2-hectare) Victoria Circle site for 163 million pounds to a 50-50 venture it will own with the Canadian fund.

The joint venture will develop five buildings on the land containing more than 900,000 square feet (84,000 square meters) of housing, offices and shops across from Victoria Station. The development will have a value of more than 1 billion pounds, ($1.57 billion) when completed, Land Securities said.

Canada’s second-biggest retirement fund bought a 45 percent stake in a $4.8 billion joint venture for 12 U.S. properties, its partner Westfield Group said today. Talks had been under way on the deal for about a year, Eadie said.

“We like retail, it tends to be very stable, it tends to generate good returns,” he said.

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