The real estate arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees’ Retirement System is entering a long-term strategic partnership to develop commercial laboratories in France.

In the agreement it reached with French urban investor and developer NoVaxia Inc., the Oxford Property Group will co-manage approximately €1 billion ($1.4 billion) in assets which will be invested in life sciences facilities in France. It will announce its first investments in the near future, which will be focused on the development of lab and research centres for biotech and medical technology companies, according to a press release.

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In its first phase, the partnership will focus on building new facilities in Paris, which attracts about 80 per cent of all biotech venture capital funding in France, said the release, noting in later phases, the partnership will explore other emerging markets such as Lyon and Strasbourg.

In the release, Pierre Leocadio, head of European investment at Oxford Properties, said France’s universities, hospitals and research institutes made it an attractive place for institutional investors in the biomedical space.

“Powered by a shared vision, we have moved quickly to identify and evaluate several potential life science sites that are adaptable to the wide range of uses required by a rapidly growing life sciences ecosystem.”

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In other news, a data centre specialist backed by the Public Sector Pension Investment Board is building a new hyperscale facility in Tokyo.

AirTrunk Operating Ltd. plans to build a new 110-megawatt facility to complement a similar facility opened in the eastern part of the metropolis last year. The new site will be constructed on a 4.6 hectare plot and powered by dedicated high voltage substations, according to a press release.

Similar to traditional data centres, hyperscale data centres allow companies to store digital assets, the release said, noting corporate clients will pay AirTrunk to provide for their data storage needs.

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