Hadley Dean. Picture: SUPPLIED
Hadley Dean. Picture: SUPPLIED

Echo-Polska Properties, the dual JSE and LuxSE-listed Poland-focused property group, has acquired an effective 70% of the Galeria Mlociny mixed use project in Warsaw.

The acquisition is part of Echo Polska’s strategy to expand its retail exposure in the capital.

"The Polish retail property market is underpinned by very strong sales growth which is supported by robust consumer spending and the government’s well-received social grants programme, which provides support to families with more than one child," said Echo Polska CEO Hadley Dean.

"We are delighted to have completed this acquisition which provides us with an earlier entry into the highly under-served Warsaw retail market. Notably it is located in a strategic transport hub in a large growing residential district, serving 40,000 people a day," he said.

Echo Polska’s success came down to a growing and hard-working property management team and its ability to operate in a market which was open to investment, Dean said.

"Poland is a fast-developing market open to investment. Echo Polska’s vision is to be a reliable, top-performing real estate company. We remain committed to this goal," he said.

The development is a predominantly mixed use project with a combined leasable area of 82,000m². It will include a cinema, a fitness club, a food court and a medical centre.

The development is 55% pre-leased and includes fashion brands such as the Inditex group’s Zara, Zara Home, Bershka, Pull & Bear, Stradivarius as well as C&A, Van Graaf, H&M and shoe retailer CCC.

Additional tenants include RTV Euro AGD, Jysk, Intermarche and Go Sport.

Echo Polska, which listed on the JSE last September, has strategic partnerships with two of Poland’s largest developers, Echo Investment and Griffin Real Estate.

Ron Klipin of Cratos Wealth said Echo Polska had a strong management team which was based in Poland and had years of experience working in the country’s commercial real estate market.

"They are going in the right direction by choosing to buy more retail assets. They have a healthy pipeline and Poland offers room to grow," he said.

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