Brookfield Said Near $1.5 Billion Berlin Property Purchase

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Brookfield Asset Management Inc., Canada’s largest alternative asset manager, is nearing a deal to acquire a group of buildings on Berlin’s Potsdamer Platz for about 1.4 billion euros ($1.5 billion), people with knowledge of the matter said.

The seller is Frankfurt-based SEB Asset Management AG, which owns the 18 buildings through the SEB ImmoInvest fund that’s in forced liquidation, said the people, who asked not to be named because the information is private. An announcement could come as early as next week, the people said.

The acquisition would be made through Brookfield’s publicly traded subsidiary, Brookfield Property Partners LP. The company agreed last month to buy U.K. resort operator Center Parcs from Blackstone Group LP for a price that people familiar with the matter said was about 2.4 billion pounds ($3.7 billion).

Representatives for SEB Asset Management and Brookfield declined to comment.

Potsdamer Platz, now dominated by luxury hotels and office towers, was a bombed-out wasteland for 50 years after World War II, with the wall dividing east and west Berlin tearing through it. After reunification, Daimler AG and Sony Corp. invested more than 1 billion euros to build a complex of futuristic skyscrapers and cinemas around a roofed-in plaza that’s now one of Berlin’s most recognizable landmarks.

SEB’s stake in the complex includes the Mandala Hotel, a CinemaxX cinema and the Arkaden shopping mall, according to SEB’s Potsdamer Platz website. The property, designed by architects including Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, has about 500,000 square meters (5.4 million square feet) of restaurants, offices, apartments, shops, public plazas and streets, the website shows.

Fosun International Ltd. and Ping An Insurance (Group) Co. were among the bidders competing to buy the property, people with knowledge of the auction said in March. Eastdil Secured LLC was hired to market the property, the people said at the time.