Blackstone Group LP is buying U.S. industrial warehouse assets from Singapore-based logistics provider GLP for $18.7 billion, in what the companies said was the largest private real estate transaction.
Blackstone, the world's largest manager of alternative assets, said on Sunday the overall transaction totaled 179 million square feet of urban logistics assets, nearly doubling the size of its U.S. industrial footprint.
The deal comes at a time when global investors are spending billions of dollars to acquire logistics assets as a surge in e-commerce activity spurs demand for delivery and warehouse services.
"Logistics is our highest conviction global investment theme today, and we look forward to building on our existing portfolio to meet the growing e-commerce demand," said Ken Caplan, global co-head of Blackstone Real Estate.
GLP's clients include e-commerce platforms such as Amazon.com Inc and JD.com Inc and consumer brands including Adidas AG and L'Oreal SA.
GLP scaled up its U.S. business over the past four years to make it the second-largest in the sector after Prologis Inc.
The transaction comes two years after a leading Chinese private equity consortium backed by senior executives from GLP won a bid to acquire GLP for S$16 billion ($11.67 billion).
Established in Singapore, GLP is a global investment manager with $64 billion of assets under management in real estate and private equity funds. Its real estate fund platform is one of the largest in the world, spanning 785 million square feet.
As part of the $18.7 billion enterprise value of the deal, Blackstone agreed to acquire assets from three of GLP's U.S. funds. Blackstone Real Estate's global opportunistic BREP strategy will acquire 115 million square feet for $13.4 billion and its income-oriented non-listed REIT, Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust, will acquire 64 million square feet for $5.3 billion.
Citigroup Global Markets Inc and Goldman Sachs & Co LLC were financial advisers to GLP on the deal. BofA Merrill Lynch, Barclays, Deutsche Bank, J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley & Co LLC were financial advisers to Blackstone.