Sun Life Financial Provides Multi-Million Dollar Mortgage for Unique British Columbia Shopping Centre

Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada, a leading provider of commercial mortgages in North America and a wholly owned subsidiary of Sun Life Financial Inc., advanced a $140 million term mortgage on October 31, 2013 to Shape Properties (Abbotsford West) Corp., developer of the new 600,000 square foot Highstreet Shopping Centre in Abbotsford, British Columbia.
 
"Sun Life is pleased to enter into this large-scale financial agreement, helping to build a new and environmentally friendly shopping complex," said Philip Gillin, Senior Managing Director, Canadian Property Investments, Sun Life Financial. The multi-million dollar deal is the largest conventional mortgage investment in Sun Life Financial's history. "This is a new and exciting venture that is bringing growth, vibrancy and sustainability to the local economy, and is also consistent with our focus on high quality, long-term investments."
 
The Highstreet Shopping Centre is located in the Fraser Valley, just over 60 kilometres from downtown Vancouver. The open air regional shopping complex, built by Shape Properties, features a three-level design with main street style shopping, dining, entertainment and other services. An anchor store is located on the lower underground level as well as 1,400 parking spots. The multi-level property stacks retail and parking on 20 acres of land, approximately one-third of the land area required for a project of this size with traditional surface parking. "In addition to the unique features of this shopping centre, Sun Life is particularly pleased to be supporting initiatives that align with our views on sustainability," said Gillin. 
 
"We are extremely proud of this shopping centre and excited to be part of the Abbotsford community. A collaborative effort between Shape Properties and Sun Life Financial on the mortgage financing made this project possible and a true success," said John Horton, President, Shape Properties Corp.
 
Highstreet Shopping Centre is owned by Shape Properties (Abbotsford West) Corp., a company holding the property on behalf of HOOPP (Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan) and Shape Properties. Shape Properties is based in Vancouver, British Columbia and is one of Western Canada's most active fully integrated real estate companies.
 
Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada is a major institutional investor, with $105 billion in general account assets as of June 30, 2013. This includes over $12 billion in commercial mortgages, the majority of which are long-term fixed-rate loans in the retail, office, industrial and multi-family residential sectors. In 2012, Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada committed to 128 commercial mortgage loans for a total of $1.1 billion in Canada and 69 loans for a total of US$931 million in the United States.

on November 5, 2013