Viterra

Acquisition by Deutsche Annington created the largest residential landlord in Germany

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Viterra was a predominantly residential Germany property company with nearly 138,000 units owned or under management when it was bought as part of Deutsche Annington’s acquisition strategy in 2005.

Investment strategy 

Asset-Backed: German residential real estate is an intrinsically low-risk asset class. Viterra had a strong market position across Germany, especially in the Rhine/Ruhr region, and the portfolio generated a steady and reliable rental stream.

Requiring Fundamental Change: Integrating Viterra’s business with Deutsche Annington’s would generate significant operational and financing synergies. In addition, applying Deutsche Annington's operational experience to Viterra's operations could enhance its rental cash flow profile. The acquisition also provided the opportunity for people to buy their own homes through Deutsche Annington’s socially-responsible privatisation programme.

Creating value 

  1. Transforming strategy

    • The Viterra operations were integrated into Deutsche Annington’s, generating significant synergies and creating the leading and largest private residential housing company in Germany. Deutsche Annington now has an industry-leading platform for the management of its properties offering its customers a competitive range of properties with excellent service.
    • The owner-occupancy rate in Germany was one of the lowest in Europe and Terra Firma believed that there was significant latent demand for home ownership in Germany. Deutsche Annington offers a tenant privatisation programme, giving tenants and third parties the opportunity to buy their own homes at affordable prices. Since 2002, the combined business has sold more than 48,000 units.
    • Further portfolio acquisitions since Viterra have enabled Deutsche Annington to continue to replenish its portfolio and build a rental asset base that provides stable, recurring cash flows.
  2. Strengthening management

    • Deutsche Annington’s senior management team was supplemented by that from Viterra, combining the strength of both businesses.
  3. Developing through capital expenditure

    • Deutsche Annington has invested heavily in enhancing the attractiveness of its properties to tenants. In the five years to 2011, it spent more than €780m on maintenance and property improvements. It also undertook a comprehensive strategic initiative to increase customer satisfaction across its operations and enhance operational efficiencies. After investing more than €100m, the project has set new standards in the German housing industry.
  4. Building through mergers and acquisitions

    • Through the acquisition of Viterra and other add-on acquisitions, Deutsche Annington has almost tripled its asset-base and is now the largest privately-owned residential landlord in Germany, with some 228,000 owned and managed units nationwide. These acquisitions generated significant efficiency savings through synergies and the added geographic diversity helped to further de-risk an already low-risk portfolio.
    • The business aims to expand its portfolio further through selective acquisitions.
  5. Lowering the cost of capital to create extra upside

    • In August 2006, Deutsche Annington successfully completed a refinancing involving the securitisation of 180,284 residential housing units in the largest-ever European Multifamily Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securitisation.

Status of Investment: In 2006, Deutsche Annington was transferred from TFCP I to a new €2.1bn fund, Terra Firma Deutsche Annington (TFDA), with TFDA acquiring an 82.5% interest in Deutsche Annington and other investors acquiring the remaining 17.5% interest. In 2013, Deutsche Annington completed an IPO and began trading on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. In May 2014, with Terra Firma's owndership of Deutsche Annington at 67.3%, TFDA distributed its Deutsche Annington shares on a pro rata basis to the TFDA investors.


Back to list of investments 

180,000

residential units owned across Germany

100m

invested in increasing customer satisfaction and enhancing operational efficiencies