Frasers Group to sell UK retail park assets - report
Frasers Group is looking to offload its out-of-town retail property portfolio that could be worth a total of £320 million.
The retail group, whose core portfolio includes Sports Direct, Flannels and Debenhams, has also accumulated retail parks and shopping parades over the past several years and is looking to offload 16 of these assets, reported The Sunday Times.
Among them are in Wigan, purchased just a year ago, and Berryden Retail Park in Aberdeen, bought 18 months ago. Other retail parks up for sale include those in Thurrock and Cheshunt, on the outskirts of the M25, and Cheetham Hill, near Manchester.
Reports suggest Frasers Group is seeking to cash in on renewed investor demand for retail parks that have fared better than high streets and shopping centres during the pandemic. Retailers are also using the larger store formats offered on retail parks as distribution centres and click-and-collect hubs.
Last year, Frasers said the retail park acquisitions were a “stepping stone” to more property acquisitions throughout 2021 and beyond within the UK and Ireland. It planned to transform its parks "into a modern, aspirational shopping destinations”.
However, the latest move shows a turnaround in its thinking. Frasers has yet to comment on the exit of its out-of-town retail property portfolio and what the funds will be used for.
The group has been busy spending heavily on remodelling and updating some of its flagship city centre Sports Direct and adding physical stores to its higher-end Flannels banner, which now has over 55 across the UK.
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