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WARSAW, POLAND-In one of the largest commercial property deals ever undertaken in Poland, Rida Development Corp. of Houston and New York-based Apollo Real Estate Advisors’ Apollo International Real Estate Fund have completed their joint venture acquisition 7 million-sf portfolio of shopping centers in Poland. The JV paid the German property investment vehicle Immopol GmbH & Co KG about $840 million for the assets. Debt financing of up to $738 million is being provided by Eurohypo.The shopping centers are master-leased on a long-term basis to affiliates of the Metro Group, the largest retailer in Germany and one of the largest diversified retailers in the world with 2003 sales of more than $64 billion. The Metro brands anchoring or taking significant space in each of the locations include the hypermarket group, Real; the consumer electronics chain, Media Markt; and the do-it- yourself chain, Praktiker. The portfolio also includes nine “M1″ hypermarket anchored centers, with flagship centers in both Warsaw and Krakow.”This acquisition concludes at a critical time for Poland as it joins the European Union, which we believe will offer significant growth opportunities,” says William Benjamin, managing director of Apollo Real Estate Advisors in Europe.Apollo Real Estate Advisors, also privately held, serves as the general partner of a series of eight diversified real estate investment funds. Apollo has invested more than $4.5 billion in the US, Europe and Japan on behalf of domestic and international retirement systems, pension plans, endowments, foundations, banks and insurance companies.Rida Development Corp. is a privately owned real estate development, construction and management company founded by David Mitzner in 1972. Eurohypo, one of Europe’s top specialized banks for real estate and public sector financing, is majority owned by Eurohypo are Commerzbank, Deutsche Bank and Dresdner Bank.

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