EBRD channels €52.1 million to major Ukrainian developer

By Anton Usov

The EBRD is organising a financing package of up to €52.1 million to a major domestic retailer, Multi Veste Ukraine, for the construction and development of an international quality, inner-city retail centre. Up to €30 million of the total amount will be syndicated to Unicredit Bank.

The project represents a substantial investment into the regeneration and revitalisation of a currently dilapidated area of Lviv city centre and will set a benchmark for a sustainable project via its economic, energy, environmental and social standards. The new retail centre, Forum Lviv, will have a sustainable architectural design in accordance with the highest industry standards (ISO 14001), making environmental and energy efficiency issues a priority.

By supporting this deal, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is also introducing the Netherlands incorporated Multi Corporation BV, which is a majority owner of Multi Veste Ukraine, to the Ukrainian market. Multi Corporation BV is a high-quality international real estate developer and operator, which focuses on inner city urban developments.

Its arrival could provide a positive signal for other international investors considering a move into Ukraine.

The project foresees the construction of modern retail stock with a gross leasable area of up to 36,000 square metres. It will help address the growing demand for retail space in the largest western Ukrainian municipality. Lviv currently offers around 154 square meters of quality retail stock per 1000 inhabitants, which is half the figure in other large Ukrainian municipalities and almost four times less than in Poland.

Energy Performance Assessment for the project was provided under the Regional Framework funded by the Japanese-Sustainable Energy Initiative Fund.

The EBRD is the largest financial investor in Ukraine. As of 31 March 2013 the Bank had committed over €8.63 billion (US$ 11 billion) through 337 projects in Ukraine.