The sale of Blanchardstown Shopping Centre to US investment giant Blackstone for €945 million this year was the single largest property deal ever transacted in the State, according to BNP Paribas Real Estate.
The group’s latest outlook report for the commercial property sector also revealed transactions during the second quarter of 2016 totalled €2.1 billion, another quarterly record for the Irish market.
The total was three times higher than turnover achieved in the same period last year, and nearly three times higher than the second quarter in 2014, which had the strongest annual turnover on record.
The report indicated office investments remained the backbone of activity with €717 million of assets changing hands between April and June.
The strong demand for prime office space continued in this quarter, boosted by the sale of One Spencer Dock for €240 million and the sale of Dublin 2 office portfolio Project Kells for €93 million.
BNP Paribas said just over €400 million has been invested in office assets on average every quarter since quarter one in 2014, with particular quarters such as the second quarter this year seeing double that level of investment, with one deal making up 25 per cent of turnover.
Economic growth coupled with a robust increase in employment and renewed levels of consumer spending all serve to support investor interest in Irish commercial property, the group said.
Joan Henry, head of research at BNP Paribas Real Estate, said: "The second quarter of this year between April and the end of June was a landmark period for the Irish commercial property sector.
“ Our research revealed that the sale of Blanchardstown Shopping Centre represented the largest single asset ever traded in the market, and with over €2.1 billion of assets transacted in the period, we are seeing the largest quarterly turnover ever.
“If turnover reaches the forecasted €3.5 billion for 2016, the 10-year average will have increased significantly to €1.7 billion, compared to €1 billion in 2013.”