29 January 2015 – Cinco Días
Two buildings on the same street in Madrid have changed hands within just over a week of each other. The fund Talus Real Estate has agreed the acquisition of the building on Gran Vía 30 (on the corner of Calle Valverde) for €42 million. On Monday, the company Drago Real Estate announced the sale of its building on Gran Vía 32 to Pontegadea, the company that owns Inditex’s real estate assets and receives its dividends on behalf of Amancio Ortega, the founder and primary shareholder of the fashion group.
According to sources close to the negotiations, JLL and Aguirre Newman have participated in the sale of the property on Gran Vía 30, as advisory consultants. However, the companies involved did not want to confirm this information yesterday.
The same sources said that the buyer plans to refurbish the property. The fashion chain Sfera, owned by El Corte Inglés, has a store that occupies two floors of the building.
Talus Real Estate’s main executives are David Finkel and Jordi Moix and its headquarters are located in Madrid. According to the company’s website, before joining Talus, Finkel worked for Westbrook Parners, where he co-directed their business in London. Westbrook Partners is a real estate investment group that was founded in 1994, has offices in the US, London, Munich, Paris and Tokyo and has invested USD 10,000 million to date. Prior to that, he worked for the Japanese entity, Nomura and for iStar Financial, another international real estate investment group.
Moix has held senior positions in the Spanish real estate companies Reyal Urbis, Metrovacesa, Layetana and Habitat; he has also worked for IAG and Citibank. Currently, he is vice-president of FC Barcelona’s real estate business.
Gran Vía is trading up
The sale of the property on Gran Vía 30 is the latest in a series of transactions undertaken on the Madrid street that will change its appearance as it approaches its 105th birthday.
The fashion group Primark will occupy several floors of Gran Vía 32, when it opens its largest store in Spain there. Talus Real Estate will also refurbish the Gran Vía 30 building. In Plaza de España, the Chinese group Wanda will convert the Edificio España into a luxury hotel and shopping centre. Next to the building sold by Santander, the hotel chain Barceló will take over some of Torre Madrid to open another hotel.
Late last year, Axa Real Estate, a subsidiary of the insurance company Axa, acquired Gran Vía 37, where the fashion retailer H&M has its largest store in Spain and which used to house the Avenida cinema, for €80 million. Also last year, the Community of Madrid sold Gran Vía 20 for €20 million to Caja Rural de Almendralejo Sociedad Cooperativa de Crédito.
2015, another big year for real estate investment
With the sale of Gran Vía 32 and the upcoming sale of the Plenilunio shopping centre, the amount of investment in Madrid will amount to €800 million. According to sources familiar with the transaction, the sale of the shopping centre will reach a figure close to €400 million.
In 2014, investment in real estate in Spain amounted to between €6,000-€9,000 million, almost twice the figures recorded in the previous three years.
During the year ahead, Socimis, which revolutionised the sector in 2014, will continue to invest, as will investment banks, whereby replacing opportunistic funds. The liquidity injection announced by the ECB will boost the sector. The expected sale of Realia will be another major transaction. Industry experts are also drawing attention to investment in logistics platforms.
Original story: Cinco Días (by Alberto Ortín Ramón)
Translation: Carmel Drake