“Those who believe that physical shopping experiences belong to the past, are mistaken. It takes more than online shopping and COVID-19 to compete with the strengths of offering good shopping experiences, and we have the utmost faith that shopping centres with a good location and quality tenant mix will succeed for many years to come,” says Petter A. Stordalen, who will be chairman and one of the owners of Aurora Eiendom.
The new company has an ambition of becoming one of Norway’s leading owner of shopping centres. Initially, Aurora Eiendom has entered into a binding agreement to acquire four shopping centres from Steen & Strøm AS: Vinterbro Senter in Ås Municipality on the outskirts of Oslo, Amanda Storsenter in Haugesund, Nerstranda in Tromsø and Nordbyen in Larvik (owned 50% by KLP, which also sells its shares to Aurora).
The shoppin centres had a total turnover of approximately NOK 3.2 billion last year. A-team of investors g Aurora Eiendom has also signed a letter of intent to acquire another large, Norwegian shopping centre at approximately NOK 1.8 billion. The total value of the five centres is NOK 4.8 billion. Aurora Eiendom has major growth ambitions and is planning to be listed on the Euronext Growth towards the end of the year. Lars Løseth in Alti Forvaltning, one of Norway’s most experienced shopping centre owners, Norgesgruppen- owner Johan Johannson and Marius Varner in the Varner Group join Stordalen on the board and as shareholders.
Christian Ringnes in Eiendomsspar is also one of the cornerstone investors. The same goes for NREP, which is the largest real estate fund in the Nordic region.
"We go against the tide and invest in something that few others dare. Our goal is that Aurora Eiendom becomes one of the leading chains of shopping centres in Norway, and eventually also in the Nordic region. This is the beginning of a new adventure,” says Lars Løseth, board member in Aurora Eiendom.
He has previously built the Amfi shopping centre chain and Alti Forvaltning which was established in 2018. Aurora Eiendom also acquires 50 per cent of the shares in Lars Løseth’s company Alti Forvaltning AS, which is owned by the Løseth and Sørbøe families. Alti will manage and develop Aurora’s shopping centres, in addition to the 26 shopping centres Alti has under management in Norway today. Raises NOK 2 billion Lars Ove Løseth, the current CEO of Alti Forvaltning, will become the new CEO of Aurora Eiendom.
“The shopping habits of the future are neither online shopping nor physical stores, it is a combination in a well- functioning interplay. Remember that humans are social beings that want to meet friends and family, consult with product experts or see and try products before we buy them”, says Lars Ove Løseth.
Aurora Eiendom aims for a diverse and long-term ownership and to raise up to NOK 2 billion in new share capital in June, of which NOK 1.377 billion has been pre-subscribed in a directed issue towards 11 cornerstone investors. In addition to this initial placement of NOK 1.377 billion, another private placement of up to NOK 623 million will be carried out in the period June 7 to June 18, where other investors will have the opportunity to subscribe for shares at the same terms.
The bookrunners have already received significant subscription interest. Aurora Eiendom has established financing with DNB and four savings banks in SpareBank 1-alliansen. Pangea Property Partners is the company’s debt advisor. DNB Markets, Pangea Property Partners and SpareBank 1 Markets acted as joint managers and bookrunners in the equity capital issue. Pangea Property Partners is the company’s financial advisor, Ro Sommernes is legal advisor and Storm Communications is communications advisor for Aurora Eiendom.