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Northwood will acquire the mall Diagonal Mar.

A new operation enlivens the investment business in the real estate sector. The fund Northwood is finalizing the acquisition of the mall Diagonal Mar, located on the avenue of that name in Barcelona. The amount will be around 150 million Euros, according to sources close to the process.

It is not the first time the building changes hands. The real estate company Hines acquired at the end of the 90s a project with a mixed use, which included residential area, offices, hotels and a great mall with 100.500 built square meters and 87.000 meters of Gross Area to Rent. It also has 5.000 parking spaces.

The total investment of the project reached 139.000 million Pesetas (around 387 million Euros).

After some refurbishment in November 2001, the establishment changed hands in 2006 and was acquired by the Irish investment group Quinlan for 300 million Euros, in their first operation in Spain. Now, the new sale would close for more than 150 million Euros, a quantity which is not established yet, as the operation is awaiting the conclusion of the due diligence process.

The mall Diagonal Mar registered in 2012 a total of 15,6 million visitors, exceeding the record from the previous year. Its sales also increased in 1%. The mall includes 197 brands, 20 of which landed last year and it has an occupation level of 98%. 2.985 employees work there.

Its main brand is Alcampo, with more than 27.000 square meters and a cinema with 18 screens and 8950 meters.

The new owner, the fund Northwood Investors was founded in 2006 by John Z. Kukral, former president and managing director of Blackstone Real Estate Advisors. Its portfolio, made of office buildings, malls and hotels, is valued at 3.700 million Dollars (around 2.780 million Euros). The new owner will charge around 1,5 million Euros per month on rents, as the average rent in malls reaches 18 Euros per square meter per month.

The Spanish malls have an average vacancy rate of 9% in prime malls, while in peripheral malls it can reach 16%, figures well over the vacancy rate of this mall, which is around 2%.

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