Home International News Hammerson bought rival Intu for £3.4 billion to create a mall giant

Hammerson bought rival Intu for £3.4 billion to create a mall giant

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British shopping centers owner has agreed to buy smaller rival Properties for about £3.4 billion ($4.56 billion) to create a pan-European real estate giant controlling assets worth £21 billion.

Hammerson owns the shopping centre in London, as well as shopping centre in Birmingham.

The idea behind the deal was to shift focus to other countries in Europe even as UK shopping malls witnessed weak sales and a slowdown perpetuated by the growing prominence of online shopping.

Recently, over 350 stores have been identified for closure – including , and . Add to this the collapse of last year and banks and malls are all set to trim real estate portfolios as more customers move online.

According to a report in The Guardian, the merged Intu and Hammerson group plans to sell at least £2 billion of assets to strengthen its balance sheet and allow it to reinvest in other, higher return opportunities.