Investors Snap Up Shopping Malls

6/05/2014 – Expansion

Large, small, local leaders or with wide development margin – all are welcomed by international investors. After several years of slump in transaction number and their volume, shopping centers in Spain are back in vogue. 

As Patricio Palomar, Research Director of CBRE, says, “in 2013, foreign funds targeted mostly offices given that their prices had hit the bottom.” During last year, the shopping mall purchase jumped by 147% to €600 million. The score has been beaten in the first three months of 2014.

“This year began robustly with huge sale of Carrefour´s shopping arcades in Spain that will eventually bring €900 million”, informs Anna Laura Benedetti, Investment Director from Aguirre Newman.

Except for the Carrefour arcades, “there were six portfolios sold for €702 million”, assures Palomar.

Firstly, Morgan Stanley put up for sale four shopping centers out of which three were acquired by Incus Capital for €30 million, about 80% of the amount the fund paid for them in 2007. At the end of February it also sold the fourth mall, the Parque Ceuta, to HIG for €18 million.

Another large-scale sale has been conducted by Vastned. The Dutch group has been selling eight shopping centers it had in Spain. Seven of them were aquired by a consortium of Baupost, GreenOak and Spanish Lar.

“We are still pending closing the sale of the Castellana 200 complex, the Islazul shopping mall in Madrid and the Boulevard in Vitoria. Jointly their price may reach €450 million”, explains Benedetti.

“New funds like Incus or Temprano Capital and private equity investors from Southern America have already taken first steps in the market, joining big listed firms like Intu Properties which compete with other experts like Corio, Unibail-Rodamco, CBRE Global Investor, Deka or Ece in race for prime assets and leadership in their areas”, she continues.

Shopping malls gain popularity not only as assets but also as corporations. Thus, Israeli group Big is negotiating purchase of half of Seville-based Bogaris with premises in Spain and Portugal. “Investment in shopping malls may reach €1.3 – €1.5 billion in 2014”, says the director of CBRE.


Original article: Expansión (by Rocío Ruiz)