Merlin Increases Its Capital By €614M To Fund New Purchases

16 April 2015 – Expansión

Yesterday, the listed real estate investment company (‘sociedad cotizada de inversión inmobiliaria’ or Socimi) Merlin Properties announced a capital increase amounting to €613.7 million. According to the Socimi, the aim of the operation is to (raise finance) to continue with its purchase of real estate assets.

The increase will be conducted through the issue of 64.6 million new shares with a nominal value of one euro and a premium of €8.50, said the company. The current shareholders, which include large funds and fund managers such as Marketfield and UBS, will have pre-emptive purchase rights. Two rights will be required to subscribe each new share. It is hoped that CNMV will publish the prospectus today following its approval.

The increase in the share capital of Merlin Properties comes less than a year after its IPO on 30 June 2014.

The company, which first floated on the stock exchange with capital of €1,250 milllion and a pre-agreement to purchase almost 900 branches and a number of banking offices from BBVA, has already invested all of its own funds and has also made use of bank financing to fund additional purchases. One of the most desirable assets in its portfolio is the Marineda shopping centre in La Coruña, which it acquired for €260 million.

Rising share price

At the General Shareholders’ Meeting, which was held just a few weeks ago, Ismael Clemente, the Chairman of the Socimi, said that the company was working on investment transactions with a value of up to €2,000 million, including office buildings, asset portfolios and shares in companies.

The Socimi closed 2014 with rental income of €56.6 million, a gross operating profit of €38 million and a net profit of €49.7 million. Yesterday, the real estate company’s shares closed at €13.10, up 0.77%.

Merlin’s recent purchases include the acquisition of an office building on Calle Alcalá in Madrid and a logistics warehouse in Coslada (Madrid), for which it paid almost €58 million in total.

Original story: Expansión (by R. Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake