19/12/2014 – El Pais
Kutxabank sold half of its real estate assets in a 930 million euro deal. As the Basque entity said in a statement, private equity fund Lone Star bought 100% of Grupo Neinor.
The operation, known as ‘Project Lion‘, allows the bank to leave from a business which is not adequate for a financial entity. Moreover, it puts in manifest Lone Star’s bet on the recovery of the Spanish property market.
This is the greatest buyout of a real estate firm since 2007 and the transaction is scheduled to be fully closed on April 30th.
The Basque group pointed out that the advantages of the sale are ‘evident’. An offload of 50% of its real estate scope means speeding up implementation of the bank’s business plan for this area, apart from outsourcing management of its REO assets to a highly specialized fund.
For the Neinor group itself, ‘Project Lion’ means an important advance in business activity, now to be led by Lone Star. What is more, the fund will develop and add value to its assets faster and more efficiently than Kutxabank could. Let alone the excellent career prospects for Neinor’s staff.
Kutxabank is planning to create a holding called ‘Newco‘, including both the entity’s reposessions and those found in balances of Neinor and Neinor Barria, with view to their subsequent sales.
Apart from the assets of Neinor, Lone Star agreed to service the properties of the entity itself.
Lone Star, a prominent international firm, has carried out 390 investments in over 1.100 transactions valued at 88.3 billion eurs in total since its foundation in 1995.
Original story: El País
Translation: AURA REE