Oxford Properties Group has moved into the cold storage sector with a CAD $475 million (USD $360 million) investment in Lineage Logistics. The strategic foray aligns the Canadian pension fund with the largest global player in cold storage logistics as momentum builds for digital commerce in grocery retailing.
“The cold storage sector has highly favourable tailwinds via a combination of population growth, a growing consumer preference for fresh food and the continued adoption of e-commerce in the grocery sector, which has accelerated due to the current pandemic,” observes Kevin Egan, Oxford’s head of investments in North America. “Our investment into Lineage is part of our strategy to capitalize on the increasing demand for infrastructure that serves the digital economy.”
Lineage owns and operates more than 320 facilities throughout North and South America, Europe and Asia Pacific, encompassing 1.9 billion cubic feet of temperature-controlled capacity and accounting for approximately 8 per cent of the total global cold storage market. Oxford president Michael Turner will join the board of directors of the company, which began with one facility in Seattle, Washington, 12 years ago.
“The cold storage industry is a sector that is poised for growth and demonstrates great resilience and defensive attributes in this current climate,” Egan says. “Our investment will provide access to the sector’s market leader and supports its management team to execute its growth strategy.”