UR buys Westfield

£18.5bn bid to form world-leading shopping centre operator

Unibail-Rodamco, Europe’s leading mall operator, has made an agreed offer for Westfield to form a global shopping centre giant. The combined company will have £46bn of assets in 27 of the world’s most attractive retail markets. UR will roll out the Westfield branding across the 104 malls in the combined portfolio.

Westfield’s controlling Lowy family is backing the deal. Chairman Sir Frank Lowy and co-CEOs Stephen and Peter Lowy along with president Michael Gutman will be stepping down, with UR CEO Christophe Cuvillier becoming group chief executive officer and chairman Colin Dyer becoming group chairman.

The new business will own the best shopping destinations in many of the world’s wealthiest cities with 56 flagship malls including Westfield London, Westfield Stratford City, Les Quatre Temps and Le Forum des Halles in Paris, Westfield Century City in Los Angeles, Westfield World Trade Center in New York, La Maquinista in Madrid, Shopping City Süd in Vienna, Mall of Scandinavia in Stockholm, Centrum Chodov in Prague and Arkadia in Warsaw.

In addition the companies’ two development pipelines are valued at £11 bn with iconic developments in London, Milan, Hamburg, Brussels, Paris, San Jose, Lyon and other major cities.

Cuvillier said: “All of us at Unibail-Rodamco have immense respect for what the Lowy family and the Westfield team have accomplished with the Westfield brand and the company’s iconic collection of world class shopping destinations. The acquisition of Westfield is a natural extension of Unibail-Rodamco’s strategy of concentration, differentiation and innovation. It adds a number of new attractive retail markets in London and the wealthiest catchment areas in the United States.

“It provides a unique platform of superior quality shopping destinations supported by experienced professionals of both Unibail-Rodamco and Westfield. We believe that this transaction represents a compelling opportunity for both companies to realise benefits not available to each company on a standalone basis, and creates a strong and attractive platform for future growth.”

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