Partners Group acquires strategic stake in Citivale

Partners Group acquires strategic stake in Citivale

Partners Group, a leading global private markets firm, has acquired a strategic minority stake in Citivale Group Holdings Ltd (“Citivale”), a UK real estate developer and asset manager specialising in logistics and light industrial assets. The terms of the investment were not disclosed.

Citivale, which was founded in 2010 by James Appleton-Metcalfe, currently manages in excess of 5 million sq ft of floor area across multiple assets in the UK. The leadership team includes two further partners, Rupert Kay and Rebecca Farnsworth, along with a seasoned team of real estate investment professionals. Citivale manages assets on behalf of a broad group of institutional investors and family offices from the UK, Europe and the Middle East.

Founded in 1996, Partners Group has USD 147 billion in assets under management, including USD 17 billion in real estate. Partners Group has made this investment as part of a new strategy to invest in real estate operating companies and their management teams in order to gain exposure to the full value chain across the asset lifecycle. Investing in operating companies also provides Partners Group with vertical depth in sectors where the firm has long-term thematic conviction, such as logistics in this case. Citivale will continue to operate independently under the management of the three partners.

Partners Group's strategic investment in Citivale will further strengthen their existing Greenbox UK logistics joint venture (JV). The Greenbox platform is focused on the development of market-leading, energy-efficient logistics properties in the UK, with two major projects already underway in Yorkshire (Greenbox Thirsk) and the North-East of England (Greenbox Darlington).

Stephen McCall, Global Head of Platforms & OpCos, Partners Group, said: "The real estate investment landscape is undergoing a period of significant change. This is presenting new opportunities to capitalise on the evolving demands of tenants driven by growth in sectors such as e-commerce. At Partners Group, we are adopting an entrepreneurial mindset to increase the operational intensity of real estate and build a more integrated relationship with our operating partners and platforms in high conviction sectors. We look forward to working with Citivale, which has a strong track record and extensive local knowledge in logistics."

James Appleton-Metcalfe, Founding Partner, Citivale, said: “We are delighted to strengthen our existing relationship with Partners Group through this strategic minority investment, which will further allow us to continue building out our team and expand the breadth of our client offering, which has delivered year-on-year AuM growth since inception. The significant correction in the UK logistics market since mid-2022 presents a generational investment opportunity for Citivale to accelerate its growth by sourcing opportunities for both existing and new clients. Partners Group's investment is an incredible endorsement of our hard-working team and our established investment and development track record.”

As part of the transaction, Partners Group has appointed George Craven to Citivale’s board as a Non-Executive Director. Mr. Craven, a member of Partners Group's network of Operating Directors, has over 40 years' experience in the UK and European real estate industry, having held senior positions in leading private equity groups (Roundhill), advisory firms (Arcadis), and construction companies (Balfour Beatty and John Mowlem), as well as running his own development company for over 15 years.

George Craven added: “I am excited to join Citivale as it looks to continue the strong growth trajectory that it has achieved to-date as a specialist operating partner. In particular, the focus on delivering best-in-class sustainable buildings in the UK market within the Greenbox JV aligns closely with the urgent need to deliver decarbonized real estate.”