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LONDON-The Mall Fund, Capital & Regional’s town centre retail fund, has broken the £1.5 billion ($2.8 billion) barrier with the purchase of the 320,000-sf Galleries shopping centre in Bristol from Norwich Union. Norwich Union–one of the founders of the Mall–has taken units in the fund as payment. The Galleries in Bristol was developed in the early 1980s. It has over 100 tenants including Argos, Boots the Chemist, Woolworths, Virgin Megastore, Gap and Mk One. According to Mall chief executive Ken Ford, the scheme is poised to benefit from the regeneration of the adjoining Broadmead shopping centre where the Bristol Alliance plans a major new covered centre anchored by Marks & Spencer.The deal means the Mall now owns 18 UK shopping centres with a combined floorspace of 5.5 million sf. The aggregate value of the fund is now £1.5 billion ($2.8 billion). And fund manager Philip Nell expects it to grow further. “The new equity that this acquisition brings will enable the fund to continue towards delivering its goal of growing to at least 25 centres,” he says.Strutt & Parker, Nabarro Nathanson and Berwin Leighton Paisner advised the Mall.

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