Sareb’s Board Suspends the Sale of its Socimi Témpore to Launch a ‘Transparent Process’

19 December 2018 – El Independiente

The sale of Tempore Properties, the Socimi owned by the Company for the Management of Assets proceeding from the Restructuring of the Banking System (Sareb), was almost a done deal, but the plug has been pulled at the final hurdle. Sareb and the investment fund TPG were in the midst of closing the final details of the operation when the Board of the so-called “bad bank” decided to reject the offer. To the bewilderment of the US group, the directors of Sareb have demanded the launch of an ordered and transparent sale process, according to sources familiar with the events speaking to El Independiente.

Tempore, which has just carried out a non-monetary capital increase for €150 million and which will soon manage 3,300 real estate assets worth €325 million, received several offers at the end of November. The bid from TPG was successful over the others, but the process did not have all of the guarantees, and so the members of Sareb’s Board of Directors took the decision to block the transaction.

“It makes sense, especially taking into account the legal problems that could be generated if a government agency participates in exclusive processes”, indicated sources in the sector. “The directors have to be increasingly careful with the operations that they approve or they may incur serious faults”, added another.

In this way, the entity that it seemed was going to become the new owner of the Socimi, TPG, is the shareholder of companies such as Spotify, Airbnb, Burger King, Lenovo, Ducati and Grohe, amongst others.

Sareb, in which the State owns a 45% stake, wanted to close the operation before the end of the year and improve the appearance of its accounts, which are set to report losses, for another year. Now, however, that operation will have to wait until 2019.

The Tempore portfolio being sold by Sareb is concentrated (80%) in the metropolitan areas of Spain’s major capitals, with the remaining assets located in geographical areas with significant demand in the rental market, such as Valencia, Sevilla, Zaragoza, Málaga and Almería.

Azora is responsible for the management of the portfolio, specifically for the administration and sale of the assets. The Socimi is led by the Director of Rentals at Sareb, Nicolás Díaz Saldaña. Before joining the bad bank, Saldaña led the international team at Metrovacesa during the toughest period of the real estate crisis (…).

Several sources in the financial sector have indicated that Sareb must maximise the cleanliness of the operations that it participates in, especially after some institutions have been called out for irregular sales.

The Bank of Spain took Sareb to task over some suspicious activity following an inspection, according to a report to which El Independiente has had access.

Original story: El Independiente (by Ana Antón)

Translation: Carmel Drake

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