Centuria head of funds management Ross Lees said the deal was “a significant, game-changer for the industrial fund and reconfirms its position as Australia’s largest listed pure-play industrial REIT”.
He said there was rising demand for data centres as more people work and shop from home during the coronavirus pandemic. This change in consumer behaviour has led to a significant surge in the need for data storage and processing requirements, which is underpinning demand for large-scale industrial property assets.
Centuria REIT”s fund manager Jessie Curtis said the acquisitions will be funded through a combination of a $340.8 million capital raising and $151.1 million of debt drawn from existing debt facilities.
“Telstra will become the fund’s largest tenant, representing 13 per cent of the portfolio’s income, ” Mr Curtis said.
“We have seen an uptick in market penetration of online shopping and we expect this trend to continue to accelerate and data centres are linked to this.”
For the year, the fund reported a 13.6 per cent rise in funds from operations to $63.5 million, which was in line with market expectations.
COVID-19 had only a minimal impact on rent payments for Centuria, which paid a distribution of 18.7¢ up from 18.4¢ in the 2019 year.