News

Maciachini signs lease for Zurich Group
19/10/2006

Doughty Hanson & Co Real Estate, one of the largest and most successful European real estate fund managers, has signed a pre-let, through a special purpose vehicle, with Zurich Insurance Company Rappresentanza Generale per l'Italia (Zurich Italia) to build a new 28,500 square metres headquarters building for its Maciachini development in Milan.

Zurich Group, one of the largest financial services providers in the world, analysed 22 potential sites for its new Italian headquarters before choosing Maciachini, a development managed by Europa Risorse Srl.

It is the latest success for Doughty Hanson and Europa Risorse's Solutions for Corporates programme in Italy, which matches needs with opportunities to create value for owners and users of real estate. The Solutions for Corporates programme has provided new purpose-built office space in Italy for companies including L' Oréal Italia, Marsh and Unicredito Italiano and has acquired surplus properties from Alcatel in Italy and Holtzbrinck and Grundig in Germany.

John Howard, Head of Doughty Hanson & Co Real Estate, said: ”Maciachini is setting the standard for first-class office developments in Milan and we are delighted to have attracted Zurich as a tenant. This is one of the most important leasing transactions in Italy the last five years, both for its size and the fact that it is a build-to-suit project. It is another endorsement of our Solutions for Corporates programme, which combines our real estate expertise, capital and creative ideas to meet most occupancy requirements.”

Francesco La Gioia, CEO of Zurich Italia, said: “This new, high-quality headquarters building projects a positive image for Zurich. The build-to-suit office, situated in a strategic location in Milan with good transport links, adds real value for our employees and stakeholders.”

Fabio Paggiaro, project manager for Zurich Italia at Maciachini, said: “Building a new headquarters building to meet our specific needs was a complex process. We worked hard with Europa Risorse to achieve a positive outcome and we hope to continue this successful relationship going forward.”

Doughty Hanson & Co Real Estate has a strong track record in Italy, where it has been active since 1999, and many of the Fund's investments have involved work with corporates.

Earlier this year, the firm closed its second real estate fund, Doughty Hanson & Co European Real Estate Fund II, with commitments of €560 million. The Fund has the potential to invest over €2 billion.

Doughty Hanson & Co European Real Estate Fund II has already made two investments in Italy for high-quality residential developments at sites in Rome, through Via Cavour Srl, and in Brescia, Italy.

Doughty Hanson & Co Real Estate and Europa Risorse are also completing Orti Antichi, a high-quality residential development of 110 apartments in an historical quarter of Milan.

At Maciachini, a team of professionals from Doughty Hanson & Co Real Estate, Europa Risorse and Zurich Italia worked together to study the project. The design, which features over 23,000 square metres of office space with a large entrance hall and several amenities including a restaurant, a conference room for 150 people and a private fitness centre together with terraces, green areas and underground parking, fully meets Zurich's requirements.

Maciachini is the premier new office location currently under construction in Milan and includes approximately 95,000 square meters of new buildings for offices, retail shops, bars, restaurants and cafes, a fitness centre and secured parking for 1,300 cars. Phase 1 of Maciachini has now been completed and comprises approximately 27,000 square metres of new office buildings. Sorin and Montblanc are existing tenants in Phase 1, with Mattel and Universal Music signed as future tenants.

The new headquarters for Zurich Italia will form part of Phase 2.

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