3 April 2017 – El Economista
Anticipa, the real estate subsidiary of the US fund Blackstone, wants to become one of the largest rental home managers in Spain. To achieve its objective, the company plans to consolidate its assets in different Socimis, which will be listed on the MAB, according to comments made to elEconomista by sources close to the fund.
Anticipa is the former real estate platform of Catalunya Caixa, which was acquired by Blackstone in 2014. That same year, the fund signed the purchase of its first major mortgage portfolio from the same entity. Known at the time as Project Hércules, the operation involved the transfer of 40,000 problem loans, for which Blackstone paid €3,615 million.
Since the acquisition was closed definitively, in April 2015, Anticipa has been in charge of managing these assets along with those from another six portfolios, which have a combined value of €7,000 million.
According to the same sources, Blackstone’s objective is to continue acquiring portfolios to reach 17,000 rental homes by the end of this year, which would make its subsidiary one of the largest residential managers in the country.
Anticipa already has 12,000 homes up for rent or in the process of being put up for rent in the short term and has placed a package of 5,000 units on the market through the Socimi Albirana, which debuted on the stock market last week. Those assets, located mainly Barcelona and Madrid, were inherited from Project Hércules.
In order to continue implementing its strategy, the fund is already working on the launch of a new Socimi, given that it considers that to be the most efficient way of structuring its portfolio. Socimis have a special tax regime in Spain and pay Corporation Tax at zero percent. In addition to Albirana, Blackstone registered two other Socimis last year, under the names Pegarena and Tourmalet.
Led by Eduardo Mendiluce Fradera, Anticipa has been in charge of managing the enormous portfolio of loans to individual borrowers, on a case by case basis, which it inherited from Catalunya Caixa.
To handle this task, the firm, which already had extensive experience in the real estate sector, expanded its workforce to incorporate more financial profiles, growing the team to include 330 professionals.
The 40,000 mortgages that Blackstone purchased in 2014 include loans with varying degrees of delinquency, from up to date to NPLs. Of the total, 3% have involved social housing cases, but none have ended in eviction.
Since Anticipa began managing this portfolio two years ago, it has managed to reach 10,000 agreements, of which the majority are “daciones en pago” and the remainder are debt restructurings.
Having freed up the asset, the firm’s objective is to allocate around 70-75% of its homes to rent, and to sell the rest – generally, it will sell those homes that are located in places where there is no demand for rental properties. (…).
Original story: El Economista (by Alba Brualla)
Translation: Carmel Drake