MinterEllison acts for Qantas in $802 million land sale

1 minute read  19.10.2021

The sale of 13.8 hectares of freehold land at Mascot, near Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport, was made to a consortium led by LOGOS Property Group, AustralianSuper and the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

MinterEllison has acted for longstanding client, Qantas Airways Limited, in one of this year's largest real estate transactions. The $802 million sale of 13.8 hectares of freehold land at Mascot, near Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport, was made to a consortium led by LOGOS Property Group. The consortium includes AustralianSuper, the country’s largest super fund, and the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

The terms of sale include a leaseback arrangement for a significant proportion of the land, including the long-term lease of Qantas' key Sydney distribution centre. In addition, there are a series of shorter-term leases for other operational facilities and car parks. This has a mutual benefit in allowing Qantas to prepare for the relocation of its current operations, while LOGOS progresses its development proposals.

Discussions are ongoing between Qantas and the purchaser consortium regarding options for future development. These options include the potential for a dedicated Qantas precinct.

MinterEllison Partner Anthony Poynton said the firm was proud to have advised Qantas on the transaction – one of Australia's largest ever corporate sale and leaseback arrangements for a single property.

Qantas' CEO Alan Joyce commented: "The strength of this sale, and its impact on our balance sheet, means we can get back to investing in core parts of our business sooner."

Qantas' agent on the sale, Colliers International, noted: "In the context of this sale, the local industrial and logistics property market has completed its best year on record, in the year to June 2021. This surpasses the previous record set back in late 1988."

MinterEllison advised Qantas on all aspects of the transaction, including:

  • initial vendor due diligence;
  • structuring and formalising the transaction documentation prior to the EOI process;
  • analysing all bids from a legal perspective; and
  • negotiating and finalising the contracts with the consortium.

The team was led by Partner Anthony Poynton and Special Counsel Andrew Wright, supported by Jenna Mastachenko and Patrick Kang, with Partner Rhys Guild advising on GST matters.

The transaction is expected to be largely completed during the first half of this financial year.

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