Unibail Commits To Invest €700M In Spain Over 7 Years

15 June 2017 – Expansión

The Franco-Dutch company Unibail Rodamco, the largest commercial real estate company in Europe, has decided to strengthen its commitment to the Spanish market, with the renewal of its management team and the launch of an ambitious investment plan for the next seven years.

The real estate company, which owns 13 shopping centres in Spain, has reorganised its management committee in the country. The most significant change has come in the form of the replacement of its most senior director, Simon Orchard – the CEO in Spain for the last 25 years will hand over the baton to Benoît Dohin, who has served as the subsidiary’s Director of Operations until now. The change will be effective from 30 June, according to sources at Unibail Rodamco.

Benoît Dohin holds a degree from HEC. In 2006, he joined the real estate group, where he has held several management positions, working in operations as well as on the merger between Unibail and Rodamco, and the acquisition of La Maquinista. In 2014, Dohin joined the team in Madrid as Director of Operations.

Following Dohin’s incorporation, Unibail’s management committee in Spain will comprise Javier Solía, Director of Development, who will also head up the Investment team going forward; Enrique Illan, Finance Director, who will also lead CSR; Laetitia Ferracci, who will replace Dohin as Director of Operations; Marta Bartolomé, Director of HR; and Ángeles García, Head of Legal.

The new management team will tackle the company’s new strategic plan, with the aim of strengthening its position in the Spanish market. Currently, the company owns a portfolio of 13 shopping centres in Spain (including La Vaguada in Madrid and Bonaire in Valencia) worth €3,556 million, which together receive 126.2 million visitors per year.

Investment plan

Unibail Rodamco plans to invest €677 million between now and 2024 on major projects, a figure that will also cover other expenditure on smaller projects.

Its plans include both the transformation of its existing centres, as well as the launch of new properties. In this vein, Unibail is working on the construction of a new shopping centre in Benidorm, measuring 58,000m2. The company plans to invest €200 million in this project and inaugurate it in 2020. In addition to the centre in Benidorm, the group has projects underway in Palma de Mallorca, where it owns a plot of land for the development of a new centre; in Barcelona and San Sebastián.

At the end of this year, Unibail plans to inaugurate the expansion of the Glòries shopping centre in Barcelona, in which it will invest another €140 million.

Original story: Expansión (by Rocío Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

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