"We are seeing demand from tenants as well as from investors,and accordingly, we are continuing to focus on developing newprojects," says Fasth. The merchant-building strategy described byFasth is similar to the approach that has become popular among UScontractors and developers in the past 12 months as a way to createa regular income stream, including several well-known shoppingcenter developers. Fasth's group is part of the Skanska Nordicregion, an entity that has offices in Gothenburg, Oresund andStockholm and does business in Denmark and Finland as well. Besidesretail, the firm is also active constructing office and industrialspace in the region.

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The assets traded to Oppenheim are fully leased, including twocenters that will open this summer. All the properties aredescribed as being in markets that have performed impressively,benefiting from one of Europe's most stable economies and asuper-low inflation rate. The country's healthy financial conditionoffers hope of near-term upside, according to the new ownership,which already controls 1.3 million sf of commercial real estate inSweden assembled from the previous acquisitions.

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Most of the space acquired through Skanska is new, while oneproperty that previously had been sold into a joint venture wascompleted in 2005. Located in the city of Malmo, that shoppingcenter known as Jellinge 1, had been owned in partnership with RBSNordisk Renting. The four other properties now in Oppenheim'sportfolio are Medlingen 3 in Lund; Generatorn 11 and Eklanda 1:107in Molndal; and Backa 23:2 in Hisings Backa, a section ofGothenburg.

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Headquartered in Stockholm and listed on the Swedish StockExchange, Skanska has 56,000 employees worldwide and reported salesvalued at $17 billion USD in 2006 from projects in development orcompleted throughout Europe, Latin America and the US. OppenheimImmobilien Kapitalanlagegesellschaft mbH is part of IVG Immobilien,which operates 30 property funds invested throughout Europe. Thefunds cover about $13.4 billion USD of investments.

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