Capstone makes offer for European property fund stake

Fondo Europa Immobiliare N.1 has invested in 13 properties, including an Italian logistics centre in Levate.

US private equity real estate firm Capstone Equities has made a €26.5 million tender offer for a 33 percent stake in Fondo Europa Immobiliare N.1, a publicly listed European real estate fund managed by Italian investment firm Vegagest.

The New York-based firm will make the investment via SP101 Finance Ireland, an Irish-domiciled vehicle managed by Capstone, and the Capstone Equities Capital Management, a hedge fund vehicle.

Capstone is launching the tender offer on 37,423 shares in the fund at €710 per share. That’s a premium of 22.4 percent compared to the fund’s net asset value (NAV) per share at the beginning of this month and a 13.8 percent premium on the weighted average NAV per share over the past year, according to the statement. The subscription period will last until 19 December.

Fondo Europa Immobiliare N1 is a 10-year fund that was due to expire on 31 December 2014, according to fund manager Vegagest’s website; a report from IPE suggested that was to be extended to 2017 or even 2019.

The fund has invested in 13 commercial real estate properties in Italy and abroad, many of which are backed by Italian banks and insurance companies. These include Italian logistics centre in Levate, which was acquired in 2013, and a car-parking lot purchased last year in the Netherlands.

Capstone is not the only US firm making secondary advances on Italian-managed real estate funds; the Blackstone Group recently bid (unsuccessfully) for real estate fund Atlantic 1 from Italian fund manager IDeA Fimit.

Led by Joshua Zamir, Capstone invests in real estate companies, real estate investment trusts, homebuilders, real estate operators and retailers, metals and mining, and shipping companies.

Both Capstone and Vegagest were unavailable to comment at press time.