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LaSalle buys German offices

LaSalle Investment Management acquires three office properties in Germany as the firm continues to expand its presence in Europe. It recently opened an office in Milan and created a special situations team in Europe.

Chicago-based LaSalle Investment Management has acquired three office properties in Airport City Bremen, Germany – a new business center in northwest Germany – through its €1 billion ($1.6 billion) German Income & Growth Fund.

The new acquisitions include a fully-leased 6,500-square-meter office building and two properties under construction, including a 4,600-square-meter building, expected to be completed in December 2008, and a 11,000-square-meter building, to be completed in the third quarter of 2009. Both properties are already fully pre-let.

The transaction represents a total investment of approximately €36 million. With its latest deal, LaSalle’s German Income & Growth Fund now counts €500 million or 230,000 square meters in deals.

The real estate investment management firm has been making moves into the European property market in recent months, most recently opening an office in Milan, to be headed by Redevco’s former chief acquisitions officer for Italy, Francesco Coviello. Coviello joined LaSalle as head of acquisitions for Italy.

The firm also created a special situations team in Europe earlier this month in a bid to assess corporate level acquisitions as well as debt and equity opportunities. The firm will target investments in large-scale joint ventures, private real estate operating companies, corporate sale and leasebacks, distressed debt and public company buyouts.