THE UK’s largest shopping centre owner is to acquire one of Spain’s biggest retail spaces in a deal worth a cool €165 million.

Intu Properties, along with the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board, has agreed to purchase the Parque Principado, a 75,000 square foot shopping centre in the northern town of Oviedo in Asturias.

Intu’s chief executive, David Fischel, said: “The opportunity to acquire Parque Prinicpado, a top 10 centre in Spain firmly establishes our presence on the ground in a country where we see considerable growth opportunities.”

The shopping centre, which opened in 2001, boasts 156 retail units, a 12 screen cinema and 20 restaurants. In 2012 it attracted nine million visitors.

Intu Properties, whose portfolio includes the Lakeside Shopping Centre in Essex, has also revealed it could launch a real estate investment trust for its Spanish holdings, suggesting it is confident the country offers attractive investment prospects over the longer term.

It’s been a big week for investment in Spain, with Santander announcing it was to make its first domestic investment since the onset of the credit crisis in 2008.

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  1. We have visited Oviedo many times travelling to and from the UK.

    It is one of the most overbuilt of all Spanish cities and most of the old industries are long gone, so where are the punters to come from.

    Remember Corte Inglais, a UK property company bought this and almost went bankrupt – simply because they had no idea of the Spanish mindset so sold it to a Spanish company that did understand.

    I find it very interesting that this company Intu wants to launch an ‘investment trust’ (is’nt this term outdated now?). Which is a good way of saying that if it all goes pear shaped they won’t lose but the mug punters will. After all if an investment is that good why would you want to let others share the spoils- caveat emptor.

    Attractive investment prospects for the long term – if the Euro survives and the Spanish are capable of changing their mindset – big IFS there.

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