Blue-Chip Church Street, Brighton Set For Biggest Offering In Years

Posted on 01st March 2022

Church Street, Brighton - arguably Australia’s premier shopping strip - is set for its most significant retail investment offering in years.

Fitzroys’ Chris Kombi and Mark Talbot, in conjunction with Jeremy Gruzewski and Liam Rafferty of Aston Commercial, have been appointed to market the commanding, multi-tenanted 71-73 Church Street & Carpenter Street, located in the absolute heart of the famous strip.

Expectations for the trophy asset are in excess of $15 million.

The fully-leased heritage-style 990sqm building offers a diversified income stream from strong and secure lease covenants, headlined by global sportswear giant Nike, together with national footwear retailer Ecco, popular bakery Laurent, and office tenants White Fox and 2 Construct.

Combined income from the five long-term leases is $705,886 per annum plus outgoings and GST.

“This is undoubtedly one of the best strip retail investment opportunities in Australia,” Kombi said.

“This presents the first test of Melbourne’s prime shopping strip investment market for 2022. After a dearth of quality opportunities were presented to the market over the past two years, it’s fitting that we start this year offering one of the most dominant properties in Melbourne’s premier shopping strip.”

“Income-producing, well-located bricks and mortar assets with long-term leases to quality tenants present among the most secure investments in the COVID-normal and low interest rate environment.

“Prime Melbourne shopping strip assets offer an investment prospect that is simply hard to beat. Church Street, Brighton is notoriously tightly held, and we’re expecting local, national and international interest for this opportunity.”

Only two properties have been sold along the strip since September 2019 - and both of them by Fitzroys. They were the NAB branch at 35 Church Street, which sold for $6.105 million at a 3.5% yield, while last year 13 Church Street, home to international retailer Oroton, sold for $6.07 million at 2.5%.

The 71-73 Church Street & Carpenter Street building is on a significant corner landholding of 931sqm boasting 66 metres of commanding frontage to Church Street (20 metres) and Carpenter Street (46 metres).

“The property presents a blue-chip investment in the here and now. Astute investors and value-add players will note the asset is on an irreplaceable landholding that presents the best landbank opportunity seen on Church Street for some time,” Talbot said.

The site enjoys a high level of foot traffic and is surrounded by some of Australia’s most popular fashion and lifestyle retailers that Church Street, Brighton is known for. It is equidistant to Woolworths and the iconic Dendy cinema complex, and sits amongst leading retailers including Scanlan & Theodore, Mecca, Witchery, Kookai, and major banks.

“Church Street, Brighton serves one of Melbourne’s most prized catchments, which has maintained a strong demographic with high disposable income and a consistently high median house price, and is home to highly sought after private schools, sporting facilities and popular beach attractions,” Gruzewksi said. The immediate catchment has been bolstered with the introduction of medium-density residential developments in what is broadly a low-rise suburb.

“Melbourne’s shopping strips have demonstrated their resilience over the past two years, and none more so than Church Street, Brighton,” Talbot said.

According to Fitzroys’ latest Walk the Strip report, Church Street, Brighton again held the title for the lowest vacancies among Melbourne’s shopping strips, with an ultra-low rate of just 0.7%. Underlining the strength of the catchment, the proportion of specialty tenants such as Nike and Ecco has increased over the past three years to 58%, giving it the highest fashion and discretionary retail component of any strip in Melbourne.

Church Street’s easy accessibility by car and public transport has further made it an attractive proposition for residents and businesses. The property offers rear access to on-site car parking with further public car parking adjoining the site, while off-street parking is included on title.

The Expressions of Interest campaign closes Wednesday, 30 March.