$20M Canberra industrial purchase timed to perfection


Timing is everything and a Sydney buyer got it just right with the $20 million purchase of a 2.7-hectare Canberra industrial holding.

The sale was settled last week after terms were agreed much earlier this year, well before sector prices surged and net yields plummeted.

It was sold off-market by a low profile Canberra family who had owned the property at 11-51 Whyalla Street, Fyshwick, since 1962, and acquired by a Sydney family investment group on a yield of 6.4 per cent.

The site, marketed by Burgess Rawson agents Steve Burke and Guy Randell, is fully leased with 21 tenants across 23 industrial units and buildings.

“We started the process on this one before Christmas and because of COVID and a few other issues it took a long time to get the DD [due diligence] sorted out,’ said Mr Burke.

“They’d agreed to terms and got a contract on those terms and then the market changed.’

He said industrial holdings of this size and scale rarely come to market in Canberra and the price paid is one of the best for years.

Industrial prices in key Canberra suburbs have moved sharply higher since terms were agreed on the Fyshwick deal.

Mr Burke said industrial land in Hume, south of Fyshwick, sold at a government auction for $160 to $180 per square metre late last year.

“At the most recent auction a couple of months ago they were getting $240, $250, 260 a metre – that’s how much it’s jumped in the last six to eight months,’ Mr Burke said.

“People have been trying to buy them after the auction for more money.’

In Beard, another nearby industrial suburb, he said prices have reached $450 to $500 per square metres, an increase of $300 per square metre in just a couple of years.

“It’s just crazy. “We’ve got no land, that’s the problem, and I’m hearing that’s the same all over Australia. Getting land is becoming very difficult.’

Martin Kelly, Australian Financial Review