Kryalos, Blackstone’s long-standing partner in Italy, has had a busy start to 2021. The asset manager has just bought an office block (pictured above) in Bicocca, an up-and-coming area of Milan, for an undisclosed sum.
The 12,000 sq m, two-storey asset, acquired for the Kryalos Opportunity Fund 1, will be completely restructured and modernised to transform it into a contemporary and fully sustainable building.
“The city of Milan is growing, developing and strengthening and some areas which had been overlooked, such as the Bicocca business district, now present interesting opportunities which we are keen to exploit,” said Kryalos CEO Paolo Bottelli. “This asset has some unique characteristics, such as a horizontal lay-out, parking, outside space and green setting, that we can enhance, in line with new office trends which emphasise flexibility.”
It was the second acquisition for Opportunity Fund 1. The first, in October 2019, was a period building in the Tortona fashion district in Milan.
In December 2020 Kryalos also bought Aviva’s headquarters in Milan, a 10-year old building in a Northern area of the city, as well as the former US consulate, a period building in the city centre, for a total of €137 million for its Thesaurus Fund, entirely subscribed by Blackstone.
Kryalos’ strategy is to buy both period and contemporary buildings, located both in the city centre and in areas on the outskirts, provided they have excellent transport links.
Dedicated fund as Palazzo Poste sale completes
Blackstone’s asset manager in Italy, it will continue to manage a dedicated fund for Palazzo Poste in Piazza Cordusio, in the heart of Milan, where it also has its headquarters. The sale of the period building, announced last October, has just been completed.
Blackstone has sold it for €246.7 million to an all-Italian consortium led by Mediobanca. The US private equity company had bought the building, which used to host the Stock Exchange and then the Italian Postal Service, in 2015 for €130 million and had then spent €23 million to restore the listed building, originally built in 1901.
The company had put it on the market last September with a price tag of €220 million, but interest in the asset from both domestic and international investors was such that a bidding war ensued, won by Mediobanca.