A joint venture between Apollo Real Estate Advisors and Rida Development Corp. has acquired a 7 million sq. ft. Polish shopping center portfolio for roughly $840 million. Apollo and Rida are both closely held U.S.-based real estate investment firms. Apollo manages several real estate funds, and Rida is chiefly a commercial property developer.

Immopol GmbH & Co. KG, a German property investment firm, was the seller. Eurohypo AG provided roughly $738 million worth of debt financing on the deal.

The properties, which includes shopping centers and freestanding stores, are master-leased on a long-term basis to German retailer Metro Group. With 2003 sales totalling more than $64 billion, Metro is the largest retailer in Poland

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"This acquisition concludes at a critical time for Poland as it joins the European Union, which we believe will offer significant growth opportunities," says William Benjamin, managing director of Apollo Real Estate Advisors in Europe.

To date, Apollo has invested more than $4.5 billion of outside equity in portfolio investments and individual property assets. Rida has more than $1 billion worth of commercial property development underway in the U.S. and Europe.