Hammerson plc announces that it has appointed Maxime Depreux to the newly created role of Chief Operating Officer – Premium Outlets, with responsibility for Hammerson’s European outlets portfolio.
Maxime, who will report into Timon Drakesmith, Hammerson’s Chief Financial Officer and Managing Director, Premium Outlets, began working at Hammerson France as an Asset Manager in 2009 before joining the Outlets team as Investment Director in 2014 following the creation of VIA Outlets (“VIA” or “VIA Fund”). The appointment forms part of Hammerson’s move to contribute greater management resources to both outlet partnerships, reinforcing the Company’s commitment to this high-growth sub-sector of the retail market.
During 2016, Hammerson strengthened its investments in Value Retail and VIA, increasing its stake in Value Retail to over 40% of net assets. The VIA Fund acquired five new outlets, achieving critical scale in the European outlets market and a gross asset value of €1.2 billion across 10 centres, in line with the original acquisition strategy. Taken together, the combined Value Retail and VIA portfolio is now the largest by value in Europe with a gross asset value of over €6 billion across 19 centres.
Timon Drakesmith, Hammerson’s Chief Financial Officer and Managing Director, Premium Outlets, commented: “2016 marked a pivotal year in the evolution of our outlet business, as we increased our stake in Value Retail and achieved critical scale in the European outlets market through VIA. Now is the right time to bolster our management resources, and I am delighted that Maxime will be taking on the newly created role of COO – Premium Outlets. Maxime has been a central part of the outlets portfolio for a number of years and will work closely with the Value Retail and VIA Outlets teams to continue to enhance the portfolio and drive further growth.”
The appointment coincides with the opening of a 6,900 sq m extension at Batavia Stad Fashion Outlet in The Netherlands. The extension, which opened to the public on Friday 12th May, consists of 40 new stores, widening the brand portfolio to include G-Star, Marlies Dekkers, Samsonite and Watch Station. As part of the extension project, other labels including Tommy Hilfiger, Guess and Lindt have upsized into larger store concepts. Batavia Stad Fashion Outlet, which was acquired by VIA Outlets in 2014, now boasts over 250 international brands and welcomes over 2 million customers annually.