Chamartín Inmobiliaria Files For Bankruptcy With €535M Debt

5 January 2016 – Expansión

The company continues to hold powers to administer and operate its assets, but is now subject to the intervention of the bankruptcy administrators.

Chamartín Inmobiliaria has filed for voluntary bankruptcy, according to a statement published yesterday in the Official State Gazette (‘Boletín Oficial del Estado’ or BOE). The company’s liabilities amount to €535 million. The group’s main shareholders are the Cutillas family (Carlos Javier Cutillas is pictured above), with a 39% stake, and the fund Morgan Stanley, with a 16% stake.

The company has filed for bankruptcy because Law 10/2008 will not be renewed this year. The Law previously allowed companies to not update the value of their real estate assets, even when those values fell significantly below market value. The Law, approved by the Government led by José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, has allowed many real estate companies to artificially survive in recent years, despite the suspension of their businesses and repayment of their debts.

From now on, creditors must inform the appointed bankruptcy administrator about the existence of any debts in the manner prescribed by the Law. They have one month from today (5 January) to formalise their notifications.

The company, which formed part of the real estate ‘lobby’ known as the G-14 during the first few years of the crisis, was included in the list of overdue debtors that the Tax Authorities published on 23 December (2015), with a debt amounting to €20.5 million.

In Spain, the company’s activity has mainly focused on its residential business in Madrid and therefore has been affected by the crisis that has hit the sector. Outside of Spain, Chamartín Inmobiliaria also has operations in Portugal and Germany.

In Portugal, it managed to refinance €1,000 million of its debt in April 2013, which it had taken out with several of the country’s financial institutions. In this way, the company became the first real estate company to refinance all of its debt in Portugal in one go.

Prior to that, Chamartín purchased the Portuguese company Amorim Inmobiliaria in 2006, under its expansion plan framework, which involved opening another thirty new shopping centres in countries across Europe over five years.

Nevertheless, “the adverse economic developments and the financial crisis in the banking sector forced the company to abandon that strategy in 2009 and to begin to study the refinancing of its debt”, said the company.

Original story: Expansión (by R. Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake