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Hammerson, Allianz to Buy Irish Mall Loans for $2.1B

National Retail

Project Jewel is going down (and no, this is the not the name of the latest James Bond flick) as Hammerson Plc and Allianz SE's real estate unit agreed to pick up a group of Dublin shopping mall loans from Ireland's National Asset Management Agency for $2.1B, the biggest for the bank since its opening in '09.

Project Jewel is set to close before the end of October. NAMA CEO Brendan McDonagh says the sale is evidence of the strong investor appetite for property-related loans.

The sale includes loans—with a par value of about 2.6B euros or around $3B—linked to the nation's largest shopping mall, the 1.6M SF Dundrum Town Centre, as well as two other Dublin retail centers. The properties are owned by developer Joe O'Reilly's Chartered Land. 

Retail sales in these malls have been on fire, generating 500M euros for Dundrum Town Centre, thanks to the nation's economic recovery over the past year and a half. [Bloomberg]