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Brookfield to buy U.K. resort business that expects 2 million visitors this year

LONDON – Brookfield Property Partners LP (TSX: BPY.UN) has agreed to buy the Center Parcs UK resort company, which has five locations in the United Kingdom that feature protected woodlands and a holiday village.

Brookfield didn’t reveal the cost of the transaction in a joint announcement with Blackstone, which manages the funds that owns the resorts, but media reports said the deal could be worth about 2.5 billion pounds, or more than C$4.7 billion.

The companies estimate more than two million guests will visit the resorts this year. Over the past five years, they have had an average occupancy rate of 97 per cent.

Ric Clark, the CEO of Brookfield Property Group, said the acquisition will be a departure from the company’s previous investments in the United Kingdom, which have been focused on office towers and logistics.

“Although these resorts are already producing steady streams of cash flow supported by nearly full occupancy year-round, we see compelling opportunities to grow the business and enhance our investment returns,” Clark said in a statement.

Brookfield Property Partners is part of the Toronto-based Brookfield Asset Management (TSX:BAM.A) group of companies.