Villar Mir Guarantees Torre Espacio’s Buyer Rent Of €26M

3 July 2015 – Cinco Días

Inmobiliaria Espacio, which forms part of the Grupo Villar Mir, wants to generate the maximum amount from the sale of the iconic Torre Espacio, one of the four skyscrapers constructed on Real Madrid’s former Ciudad Deportiva. To this end, it is willing to guarantee 100% of the building’s rental income, and pay the difference if the new owner does not reach the maximum occupancy rate.

According to sources close to the operation, Villar Mir has put a figure on the table of €26.4 million per year. This means that the purchaser will receive the same monthly rent, regardless of the occupancy rate of the building.

Torre Espacio, which has 57 floors and is 230m high, has a total leasable area of 60,142m2, as well as 1,173 parking spaces. The building currently has an occupancy rate of 85%. Companies in the Grupo Villar Mir occupy 55% of the leasable area and the corporation, which is controlled and chaired by Juan Miguel Villar Mir, will continue to rent offices in the skyscraper. The other tenants include four embassies: Canada, UK, Australia and the Netherlands.

The real estate company has offered to guarantee rental income of €35 per m2 per month, which represents an annual rent of €25.2 million. In addition, the rental cost of the parking spaces amounts to another €1 million, which takes total annual rent to €26.4 million. Inmobiliaria Espacio would retain control of the rental management of the property and of finding tenants. Nevertheless, it is likely that some investors will waive their right to the guarantee, as they will prefer to take care of the management side themselves.

With this commitment, the real estate company thinks that it will come close to the €600 million asking price for the sale of the tower. That would represent an annual yield of 4.40%, but that is rather low, according to market sources; if interest rates rise over the next few months, the viability of the tower’s financing may be put at risk.

Villar Mir has set a minimum asking price of €500 million, which represents a valuation of around €8,500/m2. The market considers that price to be high, since Pontegadea, the family office owned by Amancio Ortega, paid around €5,000/m2 for its acquisition of Torre Picasso, and the March family paid around €7,500/m2 for Ahorro Corporación’s headquarters in Castellana, 89.

On the plus side, Villar Mir’s real estate group may benefit from increased liquidity in the market and the interest shown by international funds in the recovery of the country. Even so, analysts do not expect that many candidates will have the capacity to invest €500 million or €600 million in an asset that is not in Azca, the prime business district in Madrid. (…).

‘Due diligence’

The group chaired by Villar Mir has launched an accelerated process for the sale of the building. Anyone wishing to becoming the new owner must submit non-binding offers by next Tuesday. The real estate company expects to choose the best offer during the course of the week.

Then, the candidate with the best offer will begin the due diligence process, which will last for three weeks, until 29 July – all of the experts in the market consider this timeframe to be tight. The binding offer will be made by 29 July and the transaction will be closed during the first week of August.

Original story: Cinco Días (by Alfonso Simón Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake