Rowe & Maw has acted for Charterhouse Specialist Investments (CSI) – a subsidiary of HSBC Holdings – for many years, but the relationship was consolidated when CSI retained Ashcroft Estates as its specialist property manager in the early 1990s. Rowe & Maw has acted on more than a dozen shopping centre acquisitions and disposals through its relationship with Ashcroft.
Charterhouse closed its second shopping centre fund (CSCF II) in October 2000. The fund will total £200m and expects to follow Yate Town Centre with another three to five shopping centre acquisitions during the next two years. MEPC retained the right to sell Yate and two other shopping centres when it agreed to inject nine centres into a joint venture signed last year with Australian retail giant Westfield. Rowe & Maw real estate partners Jeremy Clay and Iain Thomas advised on the latest acquisition and now head a team of seven involved in Charterhouse work.
Institutional investors behind CSCF II include Scottish Widows, Barclays Bank UK Retirement Fund and Harmsworth Pension Fund, as well as Charterhouse itself.
Rowe & Maw was also closely involved in the fund’s predecessor, CSCF I, acting for the purchaser on four out of its six acquisitions. Olswang advised Charterhouse on the remainder.