19 October 2015 – La Opinión De Murcia
Jaime Echegoyen, the President of Sareb….considers that the best way of disposing of the large residential complexes with golf courses, such as those constructed by Polaris, would be to sell them off “in a piecemeal fashion”. During the first half of the year, Murcia accounted for 4% of Sareb’s loans to property developers and 5.6% of its properties. Nevertheless, the sale of homes and premises in Murcia during the six months to 30 June 2015 represented 10% of the total and included 540 operations.
Echegoyen, who spoke to business executives at Murcia’s ‘Economy Circle’ (or ‘Círculo de Economía’) on Thursday, explained that during the morning he had visited some of the resorts built by the property developer Polaris World. This was because they have been transferred to Sareb and the entity is now trying to sell them. They include large urbanisations, with hotels and several golf courses. Nevertheless, he said that the aim of the company was to “sound out the market”, through a consultancy firm who it had engaged to find out whether there are any investors interested in buying.
His conclusion following the visit is that “there are a lot of occupied houses”, which means that the operation “will go ahead, but it will take time and the portfolio will be sold in a piecemeal fashion, because it is very big. I have been there this morning and I have seen that there are lots of people around and playing golf there. There weren’t just one or two cars, there were quite a few, which means it makes sense”. In his opinion, these large urbanisations that have been abandoned will come onto the market “gradually. The important thing is not to put everything on the market at the same tim, but rather do put assets up for sale in an orderly fashion, in such a way that we do not lower prices or overwhelm the real estate market. We could sell any kind of assets in that way, but we would generate more losses and cost the taxpayer more money. We don’t want to overwhelm the financial sector either”, he said.
For this reason, he maintains that the entity’s day-to-day sales “are small fry (in comparison). We need to take the time that has been granted to us, until 2027, to deliver our mandate and liquidate the assets that have been transferred to us, in an orderly fashion”.
The President of Sareb said that “Spain became fashionable” and attracted investors looking to make a quick buck, but he thinks that this interest “has faded now, and instead there are more investors that have a longer-term vision”. He added that “increasingly, more peopl are interested in repurchasing debt, because the asset acting as collateral may have more value than it used to and they are interested in preserving it. People are also approaching us because they want to undertake development projects on land that we have, where they want to coinvest”.
Original story: La Opinión De Murcia
Translation: Carmel Drake