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News release

The Queensland office investment market is firmly on the radar of international investors

Ausenco Limited Headquarters at South Brisbane sells to Hines Investments

BRISBANE, 8 MARCH, 2012 – The global Headquarters of Ausenco Limited, at Montague Road in South Brisbane, has been sold by Jones Lang LaSalle on behalf of the owners Empirica Management PropertyTrust for just under $90million. 
The campaign clearly highlighted the strength at which Australia as an investment destination is currently regarded by global investors.
The Purchaser is US owned Hines Global REIT, this being their first property investment in Australia.
Ben McGrath of Jones Lang LaSalle said the sale was significant for a number of reasons particularly given the property’s status at the heart of South Brisbane's Urban renewal precinct. The divestment at a value of approximately 8.6% initial yield is a great indication of the confidence the market has in the long term future of this precinct, in addition to the fact that Ausenco Limited, the Energy and Resources Group, chose the location to base their Global Headquarters.   
“There are very few new office opportunities available in the investment market at present and 144 Montague Road presented a blue-chip commercial office investment, fully leased to an institutional tenant covenant in Ausenco, within 1km of the CBD. 
"Empirica Management did a fantastic job in securing a new 10 year commitment over the asset as part of a sub-lease agreement between Ausenco Limited and Origin Energy, which then enabled us to attract significant interest from both the domestic and offshore investment markets.
“This campaign clearly demonstrated to us the importance of utilising our global platform to capitalise on the stature Australia, and Queensland in particular, now enjoys in global capital markets. Hines and other investors who have actively been seeking secure office investments in Asia Pacific over the past 10 years confirmed that Australia is now regarded as the most attractive investment market in Asia in the office sector, due to the low cap rates being demanded in other major Asian Capital cities,” said Mr McGrath.
“In addition the maturity, transparency and growth offered in the Australian market make the acquisition process of assets here easy, even when factoring in fluctuating currency valuations. 
“Due to our strengthening trade relationships with China it also ticks the box for global investors who need to ensure they have some exposure in their portfolio to Asia,” said Mr McGrath.  
The sale, which was jointly marketed with Knight Frank, further highlights the result of an analysis undertaken by Deloitte Access Economics in rating Brisbane as the Number 1 mature city in the world for growth over the next decade.