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npl-reo Market News: Spanish Real Estate Intelligence

Haya Real Estate Negotiates Contracts with Sareb & BBVA Ahead of its IPO

31 July 2018 - Europa Press

Haya Real Estate, the Spanish real estate servicer owned by the US fund Cerberus, has linked its possible IPO in Spain to the “visibility” that it obtains over the negotiations that it is holding to renew its contract to manage the real estate assets of Sareb and to take over the contract of BBVA.

That is according to the firm’s Finance Director, Bárbara Zubiria, speaking during the presentation of the servicer’s half-year results.

With respect to Sareb, Haya Real Estate is currently offering the bad bank various alternatives ahead of the termination, in mid-2019, of its contract to manage some of the bad bank’s assets.

In terms of BBVA, the firm is waiting for the entity to decide whether to award it the management of the assets that it is going to transfer to a joint venture owned by the bank together with Cerberus.

For the time being, during the first half of the year, Haya Real estate saw its revenues rise by 20% to €130.2 million, boosted by an “increase” in the commissions that it charges for its activity and management.

Meanwhile, the EBITDA grew by 16% to €64.9 million, according to reports from the company.

During the first half of the year, the servicer led by Carlos Abad managed assets amounting to €38.8 billion, on which it closed transactions worth €2.4 billion, up by 58% YoY.

In financial terms, at the end of the period, the firm had corporate debt amounting to €463 million.

Spain's first listed servicer

Haya Real Estate is continuing to weigh up the pros and cons of its leap onto the stock market even though two of the three real estate companies that had announced their debuts, Azora and Testa Residencial, postponed their own IPOs and have opted to list on the MAB instead.

In the event that it does make its stock market debut, the firm led by Abad will become the first of its kind to list on the stock market in Spain and one of the first in Europe.

The servicer of Cerberus is not a real estate company, but rather a company that manages and develops real estate assets for third parties, in this case, primarily assets that were foreclosed by the financial institutions during the crisis.

Constituted in 2013, the firm currently manages loans and real estate assets worth almost €40 billion. Some of the entities that have entrusted the firm with the management of their assets include Cajamar, Liberbank, BBVA, Sareb and Bankia, amongst others.

Original story: Europa Press

Translation: Carmel Drake

 
CaixaBank Will Save €550M Over the Next 3 Years from the Sale of its Real Estate

27 July 2018 - La Vanguardia

CaixaBank estimates that the sale of 80% of its real estate business to the US fund Lone Star will result in a cost saving worth €550 million over the next three years, from 2019 to 2021.

On 28 June 2018, CaixaBank announced that it had reached an agreement with Lone Star to sell it a portfolio of foreclosed assets comprising real estate assets available for sale as at 31 October 2017 and the real estate company Servihabitat, worth around €7 billion in total.

The CEO of CaixaBank, Gonzalo Gortázar (pictured above), highlighted today that the operation, which is expected to be closed at the end of this year or the beginning of next year, will allow the entity to clean up its balance sheet of the foreclosed assets accumulated during the years of the crisis and to improve profitability.

“We have managed to reduce the volume of harmful assets sooner than we had expected, before the new strategic plan comes into effect” for the period 2019-2021 that CaixaBank plans to present in November, according to Gortázar.

The director added that the operation with Lone Star will not generate “a significant result” for CaixaBank, although it will allow it to increase its future profitability, thanks to cost savings of around €550 million over the next three years, given that having real estate assets on its balance sheet has an associated operating cost.

The completion of this sale will result in the deconsolidation of CaixaBank’s real estate business, which will make it “the bank with one of the most healthy balance sheets in the Spanish market”, he said.

Original story: La Vanguardia

Translation: Carmel Drake

 
Project Apple: Apollo Bids Hard for Santander's Last Real Estate Portfolio

30 July 2018 - El Confidencial

Project Apple, the name chosen for the €5 billion real estate portfolio that Banco Santander has put up for sale, is entering the home stretch. The entity chaired by Ana Botín has asked the interested funds to submit their definitive offers this week, according to sources close to the operation.

As this newspaper revealed, the firms that have expressed their interest in the operation include the giants Lone Star, Cerberus, Blackstone and Apollo, although, the latter two are regarded as the favourites, given that they have significant recent history with the Cantabrian bank’s property.

Just one year ago, Blackstone was awarded project Quasar, the €30 billion portfolio of gross toxic assets that Santander sold (following its acquisition of Banco Popular). Meanwhile, Apollo owns 85% of Altamira, the real estate asset manager that the financial entity created and which is currently administering the €5 billion portfolio up for sale.

Having been left out of all of the major real estate processes involving the banks, Apollo has decided to bid hard for Apple, according to the same sources, a move that has been launched in parallel to the possible sale of  (its stake in) Altamira, the manager that would lose some of its appeal if another fund were to manage to acquire this portfolio.

In addition, the firm led in Spain by Andrés Rubio has just reached an agreement with Santander to modify Altamira’s management contract and to refinance the servicer’s debt, in a deal that has allowed the fund to distribute a dividend of €200 million.

For Santander, the sale of Project Apple will mean completing the divestment of all of its real estate exposure, a move that took a giant leap forward last year with the transfer of the Quasar portfolio to Blackstone.

Nevertheless, and precisely because it has already cleaned up the bulk of its balance sheet, the entity does not have any need to sell and, therefore, if the bids come in below its expectations, it may decide not to transfer the portfolio after all, at least not through this process.

After the Cantabrian bank, BBVA reached an agreement with Cerberus to sell it 80% of its toxic property, whose gross value amounts to €13 billion, in an operation that is expected to be completed later this year.

More recently, CaixaBank reached an agreement with Lone Star to sell it 100% of Servihabitat and the majority of a portfolio of properties worth €6.7 billion; and Banco Sabadell made a deal to transfer €12.3 billion in toxic assets to Cerberus (€9.1 billion), Deutsche Bank (€2.3 billion) and Axactor (€900 million).

Original story: El Confidencial (by R. Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake