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Morrinsville supermarket asset beckons local and national buyers

The land and buildings associated with the Countdown Morrinsville supermarket at 66 Studholme Street, Morrinsville are for sale, providing an opportunity for investors to acquire a defensive commercial asset with an enviable tenant covenant in a fast-growing rural Waikato town.

Part of New Zealand’s economic triangle encompassing Hamilton, Tauranga and Auckland, and located in the heart of some of New Zealand’s most-productive dairying country, Morrinsville lies within the Matamata-Piako district around 30km east of Hamilton.

The property occupies a 1,876sqm freehold site, and offers around 1,724sqm of lettable area, with dual frontage to the main arterial Studholme Street, and Anderson Street.

Constructed in 1994/1995, Countdown Morrinsville comprises a generally low-maintenance single storey warehouse structure providing tidily-presented clear-span supermarket space for an efficient and functional store layout.

A small office mezzanine along the south-eastern elevation provides operational and administration areas for management, while a bakery, delicatessen, seafood, back-of-house area and food preparation zones run along the northern edge and interlink with loading bays.

The dedicated loading zone and inward good delivery zone is located off Anderson Street, with supplementary access and ancillary carparking by way of 55 exclusive on-grade car parks provided by a license to occupy agreement between the lessee and the Matamata-Piako District Council. The building has an assessed new building standard (NBS) rating equivalent to Grade A, or 86 percent NBS.

Owned by Investore Property Limited, and managed by Stride Investment Management Limited, part of the NZX-listed Stride Property Group, Countdown Morrinsville is centrally located and benefits from a broad residential catchment and wider rural consumer base.

Now surplus to its immediate requirements, Investore has appointed Bayleys to sell the property by way of tender, closing 4pm, Thursday 10th August 2023, unless sold prior.

It is being marketed by David Cashmore and Josh Smith, Bayleys Waikato, along with Charlie Tudehope from Bayleys’ Auckland-based capital markets team.

With connections to the site back to 1994, Tudehope says Countdown’s parent company, ASX-listed entity Woolworths Group, via General Distributors Limited trading as Countdown, recently extended its existing lease by a further four years, taking expiry out until February 2029 and giving the property a 5.6-year lease tail.

“The property currently generates a base net passing rental of $471,683.10 per annum, plus an additional turnover-related component.

“The store is achieving its turnover threshold, is well-positioned for the future and is trading well.

“By extending the lease, Countdown has signalled they wish to remain on-site and with further upgrade to the turnover rental, it’s a compelling investment opportunity.

“Particularly with the food price index (FPI) having averaged annual percentage increases of 10.39 percent over the past eight quarters.”

Countdown is New Zealand’s largest supermarket operator and one of this country’s biggest companies and employers.

Cashmore says the property’s location, adjacent to other high-profile retailers like Mitre 10, Unichem Pharmacy and The Warehouse, further strengthens the asset’s credentials and makes it a valuable piece of central Morrinsville real estate.

“It’s a highly visible site with excellent walk-up and the store is well-supported by the local community.

“There’s significant residential and industrial growth underway and forward-planned, and Morrinsville is transcending its traditional rural service town status the Matamata-Piako District Council being proactive about growth.

“The new Lockerbie Estate residential subdivision and its retirement village nearby adds weight to the investment proposition of the Countdown property, and there are two new industrial subdivisions in the mix, too, with one in Keith Camp Place advancing well.

“This private investment demonstrates the confidence being shown in the town which celebrates its rural foundations, and is underscored by commitments from the likes of wholesale and retail tractor and farming equipment firm Power Farming, which has established its new head office in Morrinsville.”

Cashmore says enquiry is likely to come from individuals, family trusts, and retired farmers, with the latter proving keen to invest in commercial property within their district.

“A bricks and mortar asset that they can drive past appeals to local investors and they recognise the value-equation of investment in property aligned with fast moving consumer goods.”

The supermarket sector has remained among the most resilient investment classes, offering low volatility and strong sales figures throughout fluctuating economic environments.

Tudehope says given the yield spread between Morrinsville and larger markets like Auckland, the supermarket offering will also appeal to out-of-town investors.

“Astute investors recognise the inherent pull of the economic golden triangle, and as this property boasts a quality tenant covenant and is achieving turnover thresholds, we’d expect to field enquiry from around the country.”

Click here for more information on the listing.

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