Mallesons Stephen Jaques acted for Allco Finance Group on its recent acquisition of five major commercial and retail properties across four Australian jurisdictions. The deal was worth approximately $680 million and was one of Australia’s largest property transactions of the year.
The company acquired: a 50 per cent interest in the retail and carparking component of the World Square development in Sydney; the ownership structure of the office component of the World Square development in Sydney, comprising Ernst & Young Tower and 50 Goulburn Street; a 50 per cent interest in Central Park Tower, Perth; 222 Exhibition Street, Melbourne; and 134 Reed Street, Canberra.
Mallesons managed and organised the extensive due diligence required with the negotiation and documentation of a large number of complex documents within an extremely tight timeframe. The project was led by Mallesons’ property projects and investments team and an additional integrated team was established to draw on support from other expert teams within the firm and advise on tax, corporate, banking and finance and planning and environment issues.
The transaction was conducted across the firm’s Melbourne, Sydney and Perth offices. Andrew Erikson was the lead partner, assisted by senior associate Alex Peace. The deal was relatively unique as the five acquisitions were conducted simultaneously, Peace said.
The complexity of the deal made organisation paramount for the Mallesons team. “It was a matter of making sure we were on top of things every day and all the teams were aware of what was going on,” she said. “It was important that we were acting as one team.”
The transaction was carried out over a two-month period. “It essentially started out with one property in Sydney, then the others got added very quickly towards the end,” Peace said. “What was one property turned out to be four, then two to three weeks before it was supposed to be signed, it went to five.”