3 July 2017 – El Economista
Banco Santander is going to control 100% of the real estate arm of the recently acquired Banco Popular. The bank led by Ana Botín has repurchased 51% of Aliseda for €180 million. Since 2013, that stake had belonged to the funds Värde Partners and Kennedy Wilson.
In this way, the entity hopes that it will be able to fulfil the objective set by itsPresident Ana Botón to cut Popular’s real estate balance in half within 18 months.
With complete control over Aliseda, Santander hopes to accelerate the pace of divestment. Currently, Popular owns almost €37,000 million in non-performing assets.
In this sense, the bank also announced that it has launched a search process for partners for a portfolio containing foreclosed assets and real estate loans amounting to €30,000 million.
At the end of 2013, Popular reached an agreement to create a joint venture to manage its real estate business. The operation, worth almost €815 million, saw Popular record profits of around €710 million. The repurchase is expected to be completed during the third quarter of this year and will involve capital consumption of €302 million.
Aliseda sold 11,290 properties in 2015, with a turnover of more than €1,970 million. In 2014, it sold 8,600 properties for €1,500 million.
In fact, at the end of last year, Banco Popular considered removing these properties from its balance sheet through the creation of an independent real estate company, which would have included high-quality assets, such as its properties in Sotogrande, as well as homes in ghost neighbourhoods of Madrid. Although the CNMV was notified, the operation did not go ahead in the end.
Original story: El Economista
Translation: Carmel Drake