Brookfield buys U.K. holiday group Center Parcs from Blackstone: Reuters

British-based holiday resort group Center Parcs has been bought by Brookfield Property Partners, after previous owner Blackstone Group opted to sell the company rather than float it.

Blackstone, the U.S. private equity firm which had owned Center Parcs since 2006, was in February reported to have hired two investment banks to prepare Centre Parcs for a potential London listing.

Brookfield said on Tuesday that one of its funds had agreed to acquire Center Parcs for an undisclosed sum, in a deal expected to complete in July.

Media reports previously said Blackstone had rejected a 2 billion pound (US$3 billion) bid for Center Parcs from another bidder.

Center Parcs runs five holiday resorts in British forests, offering activities ranging from badminton to horse riding alongside spa packages.

Brookfield Property Group’s chief executive Ric Clark said the acquisition was a departure from his firm’s past focus in Britain on office and logistics-related investments.

“Although these resorts are already producing steady streams of cash flow supported by nearly full occupancy year-round, we see compelling opportunities to grow the business and enhance our investment returns,” he said in a statement.

Rothschild, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley acted as advisers to Blackstone.

Brookfield Property Partners is a commercial property platform affiliated with Toronto-based alternative assets investor Brookfield Asset Management.

(Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by Mark Potter)

(This story has been edited by Kirk Falconer, editor of peHUB Canada)

Photo courtesy of Center Parcs