Rare Opportunity To Acquire A High Performing Neighbourhood Centre In Thriving Busselton

Australian Unity’s Diversified Property Fund is moving to sell the recently redeveloped and expanded Busselton Central in WA amid heightened investor activity in the WA market for retail assets, where $1.5 billion has transacted since 2022.

The campaign presents an opportunity to acquire a recently redeveloped convenience-based shopping centre anchored by Coles and Reading Cinemas on long term leases, with the centre the focal retail asset within a vast and growing trade area.

Stonebridge’s Phil Gartland and Justin Dowers and CBRE’s James Douglas have been appointed to steer the Expressions of Interest process, which is expected to generate significant interest from a range of private, syndicate and institutional investors.

The centre underwent a $45 million redevelopment in 2023 and comprises a 13,295sqm neighbourhood centre, anchored by a strong performing Coles supermarket, forecast to pay percentage rent in the short term, together with a new state of the art five screen Reading Cinemas, plus four mini-major tenants and 31 shops.

The centre features a highly secure tenancy profile, with the major tenants secured to 2033 and offers a total centre WALE (by GLA) of 7.4 years together with strong tax depreciation benefit potential for an incoming investor.

Stonebridge’s Phil Gartland added “Busselton Central is an exceptionally well-presented centre following the major capital investment in the asset. The centre features a highly convenient design, excellent on-grade parking and with destinational retailers which are a major draw card for both local resident and tourist shoppers. The centre also occupies a land rich site of over 30,000sqm in the heart of the town centre and there are angles for intensification and value add.”

Busselton is 230km south-west of Perth and 52km south of Bunbury and is a well-established growing region and a popular tourist destination for Perth residents, as well as interstate and international visitors. Busselton serves as the gateway to the internationally renowned Margaret River and is the largest population centre in the region.

Busselton Central’s dominant position in its retail hierarchy sees it serve a major and expansive total trade area of some 66,276 people, which is forecast to grow rapidly, at close to 3 times the Western Australian average over the next 7 years. Retail sales in the trade area are forecast to reach $2.58 billion by 2041, reflecting strong average annual growth of 4.2%.

Justin Dowers noted “Busselton Central offers many tenants that are not available anywhere nearby cementing it as an essential offering in the region which is seeing substantial infrastructure and population growth. The continued growth in tourism is a major driver for the town, especially with the Airport expanding its capabilities and offering flights from Melbourne and Sydney.”

“Busselton Central provides a rare opportunity to acquire a near new, dominant and strong performing centre, which is set to enjoy real sales and income growth courtesy of its rapidly growing trade area and superior offering,” CBRE’s Mr Douglas said.

“The investment provides opportunities to enhance the centre’s income through Coles’ performance and the specialty tenant profile, as well as offering a high degree of expense protection.”

Expressions of Interest closes 5pm (AEST), Wednesday, 24 July 2024.

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