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Principal announces close of European data centre fund

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Principal European data centre fund

Principal Global Investors has closed on a fund dedicated to acquiring data centre assets in Europe.

The ‘Principal European Data Centre Fund’ was completed by the company’s real estate investment arm, Principal Real Estate – and reached €155 million, surpassing its target. The amount is one-third of the total equity hard cap of the €450 million Principal set for the fund.

The fund was raised through seven international investors, including asset managers, pension funds, and insurance companies.

Principal has said the fund will be focussed on manage-to-core data centre assets, and has allocated 60% of it across the Netherlands, France, UK and Ireland, with the remaining 40% to be distributed to secondary markets, such as Spain, Italy and Switzerland.

“We have been evaluating the European data centre sector for the last two to three years, closely watching demand drivers such as advancements in technology and increased data consumption to determine the right time to launch a fund. With the first close being above our target equity raise, we are in a strong position to achieve our goals for the final close and to begin executing on our acquisition plans across Europe,” said Paul Lewis, director of European data centres, Principal Real Estate.

“Data centres will remain appealing investment opportunities given their diversification benefits and strong risk/return profile, and we continue to believe there is intrinsic value in standing data centre assets across Europe’s primary and secondary markets given the long-term, structural tailwinds supporting the sector.”

In June last year, Principal closed its first data centre fund in the United States, which was also over target at €471.4 million. Since entering the data centre market in 2007, the company has committed over €1.75 billion in data centre acquisitions and developments and owns more than €1.18 billion in data cente REITs.

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