Axa Sells Eight Buildings in Barcelona to Germany’s KanAm Grund for €100 Million

14 July 2019

A major German investment fund, KanAm Grund, has acquired eight buildings in Barcelona, in a deal reportedly worth 100 million euros. All are currently leased to the Catalonian government.

The seller, the French investment giant Axa IMRA, originally acquired the assets, together with another five buildings, from the Catalonian government in 2013 for €172 million. At the time, Spain was still mired in the real estate and financial crisis and the sale had been the cash-strapped administration’s second attempt to offload the assets. As part of the agreement, the Catalonian government agreed to remain in the properties for twenty years.

The buildings included in the deal consist of the Conselleria de Justícia, on Calle Pau Claris; the Citizen Service Office on Calle Carrera; the General Subdirectorate for Initial Employment Authorizations, on Calle Puig i Xoriguer and the headquarters of the Institut Català de les Dones (ICD), on Plaza Pere Coromines. The remaining buildings include the headquarters of the Institut Obert de Catalunya, on Avenida Parallel, the Territorial Judicial Archive of Barcelona, on Calle Roger de Flor, the headquarters of the General Directorate for Language Policy, on the Portal de Santa Madrona and the Employment Office on Calle Doctor Joaquim Pou.

Axa retained five of the larger assets in the portfolio: the offices of the Conselleria de Justícia and the headquarters of the Agència de l’Habitatge de Catalunya, both on Calle Aragón; the Conselleria de Enseñanza, on Via Augusta, and the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, Food and Natural Environment, on the Gran Vía, among others.

Original Story: El Confidencial – E. Sanz / M. Lamelas

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Naturgy to Relocate 4,000 Employees in order to Rent Out Offices

30 May 2019 – Expansión

Francisco Reynés, the President of Naturgy, is adjusting costs through a mega real estate plan that will see the company optimise its office space at all of its headquarters across Spain, in order to free up plenty of square metres to be re-let or sold.

In total, around 4,000 employees will be moving offices in an operation that could affect up to 50 different offices. The first moves will be made in Madrid and Barcelona, where around 2,500 workers will be affected, with the firm’s departure from its large headquarters on Avenida de San Luis, 77 in the Spanish capital and on Plaza del Gas, 1 in the Catalan city.

The aim is to leverage new opportunities offered by design (open-plan offices), technology (working from home) and internal reorganisations to cut real estate costs. Austerity and pragmatism will prevail over other factors such as aesthetics and corporate image.

Original story: Expansión (Miguel Ángel Patiño)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Valladolid’s Town Hall Finalises Operation to Group Together its Offices in Plaza San Pablo

18 August 2018 – El Norte de Castilla

Valladolid’s Town Hall is finalising an operation to hand over plots of land to the Ministry of Justice and group together its headquarters in San Pablo.

The buyer is a listed company and, before closing an agreement with the Town Hall, needs to obtain approval from its shareholders and from Spain’s National Securities and Exchange Commission. But the operation, which is described as “good news” for the city and the municipal coffers, is in a very advanced stage. The Town Hall is finalising the drafting of the agreement with an important company, whose name has not been disclosed, which will make it possible for the El Salvador school plot to be placed at the disposal of the Ministry of Justice so that all of the headquarters located across the city can be grouped together in the San Pablo area.

The deal will work as follows. The property development firm will acquire the plots from the owner of the former education centre, pay off a significant debt that its owners have contracted with Sareb – which is estimated to amount to €10 million – and grant the El Salvador plot to the Town Hall. In exchange, the Town Hall ‘will pay’ this plot with buildability. Specifically, almost 6,000 m2 on another “very central” plot, whose location has not been revealed for the time being.

Without legal problems

According to the local Administration, the solution will resolve all of the problems and delays that an expropriation process could involve and will include the withdrawal of legal appeals that the owner company had filed against the municipal plans.

Moreover, the Town Hall will maintain the buildability of the plots next to the Zambrana school, in the Delicias neighbourhood – plots that were going to be handed over to the owners of the school as compensation for El Salvador (…).

The plan, as announced by the mayor last week, is to sign the agreement with the buyer during the month of September (…).

Original: El Norte de Castilla (by J. Asua)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Major Real Estate Projects in Madrid to Attract €10.5 Billion in Investments

21 August 2018

Some of the outsized projects for the coming years include the northern Madrid construction, the expansion of the Barajas airport and the Canalejas project.

Madrid will soon be the target of multi-billion euro investments in major real estate and urban development projects, upgrading the Spanish capital’s image in the coming years. The investments will lead to the construction of housing, skyscrapers, hotels, shopping centres, university campuses while also renovating some football stadiums and demolishing others.

Madrid Nuevo Norte, under development by DCN; Aena’s real estate project for Barajas; the Canalejas and Caleido project, along with the renovation of the Bernabeú stadium and the Mahou-Calderón development will involve total investments of €10.5 billion.

Four new skyscrapers

Madrid Nuevo Norte is the most ambitious project and the one that has been the longest in the making. Formerly known as Operation Chamartín, the project involves the construction of 365 new buildings in Madrid, including 10,500 flats and three skyscrapers in the vicinity of the Chamartín train station, in the north of the capital.

Construction of the project, which had been paralysed for a quarter of a century, is expected to begin in 2019. If the developer manages to keep to the announced deadlines, reparcelling and development will start by the end of next year or early 2020, and the first homes will be ready by 2021 or 2022.

Considering the sheer magnitude of the project, which will have a buildable area of 2.66 million square meters, construction is expected to last for more than two decades. Madrid Nuevo Norte will require €6 billion in investments and should create roughly 120,000 jobs during the construction phase and 94,000 posts after its completion.

A building known as the fifth tower will be erected in the area surrounding Madrid Nuevo Norte. The Caleido project will involve investments of €300 million and should be ready by the end of next year. Inmobiliaria Espacio, of the Villar Mir Group, was awarded the development and operationalisation of the project on public land in 2014 and is leading the development together with Megaworld, a conglomerate held by the Filipino billionaire Andrew Tan.

The project will include a 36-floor, 165-meter tower, which will house IE’s new, vertical campus, and a second building, 280 meters long and 60 meters wide, that will host a sports medicine centre operated by Quirónsalud.

Aena’s planned project for the land adjacent to the Barajas airport also stands out. The airport manager is forecasting a total investment of €2.997 billion over the next 40 years.

The project, with 2.7 million buildable square meters, will have logistics warehouses, offices, hotels and even a shopping centre. The company chaired by Maurici Lucena is searching for partners to develop its plans and, for now, the Blackstone fund and other major investors have demonstrated interest.

The Canalejas project, under development by OHL and Mohari Limited, a company owned by the Israeli executive Mark Scheinberg, is located in central Madrid. The venture, which will link seven historic buildings, will host Spain’s first Four Seasons hotel, along with luxury homes and a shopping area. The project is expected to involve €300 million in investments and is expected to be ready by 2019.

Madrid’s real estate and urban development plans will also affect the iconic Santiago Bernabéu stadium. In April, the city council gave the green light to a plan for reparcelling land for the new stadium, which will involve an investment of about €400 million.d

Housing at the Calderón

1,300 homes will be built on the grounds of another stadium, the Calderón, the former home of Atlético de Madrid. The sale of the land is expected to raise about €175 million in investments from any future buyers (developers), in addition to the more than €42 million stemming from the reparcelling project for the stadium and the grounds of the old Mahou factory.

Original Story: Expansion – Rebecca Arroyo

Translation: Richard Turner


PSN Increases its Office Portfolio in Seville, Acquiring a Building in the City’s Historic Centre

6 August 2018

The six-story building and basement have 730 square meters of area. PSN’s mutualists will be able to receive information and advice on the ground floor.

Previsión Sanitaria Nacional (PSN) is expanding its network of offices. The Spanish socimi, made up of university professionals from the health sector, has acquired a six-story building, with basement, in Seville’s centre. The group paid 2.6 million euros for the property that will become the new headquarters of PSN Andalucía in the coming months.

With this move, the socimi will install itself at 21 Paseo de Cristóbal Colón, an important urban artery in the neighbourhood of Arenal, where the most popular touristic buildings are located in Seville’s historic centre, the company said in a statement.

The building, built in 1929 and completely renovated in 1960, consists of 730 square meters. A new information and advice desk for the company’s mutualists will be located on the building’s ground floor, which consists of more than 100 square meters.

Currently, PSN has three offices in Seville. Together, the company owns properties in 30 buildings in 23 cities in Spain and Portugal.

Original Story: EjePrime

Translation: Richard Turner

Carmen Godia to Invest €22 Million Building Offices in 22@

15 June 2018

The old Poblenou plant will hold on to the old factory’s principal architectural elements while being transformed into a modern office building. The office will be rented to small and medium-sized businesses.

Carmen Godia is investing in Barcelona’s real estate sector. The businesswoman will develop an almost 9,000-square-meter building in the old Canem factory, on Calle Doctor Trueta, in the centre of 22@. Between the purchase of the site and the construction of the new building, the investment will total about 22 million euros.

The old Poblenou plant will maintain the architectural elements of the old factory, but it will be transformed into a modern building to be rented to small and medium-sized companies, offering offices with areas running from 200 to 600 square meters, Expansión reported.

The Canem factory was built by Carlos and Bartolomé Godó in the 19th century. During the war, it became a provisional prison, and in 1964 it was sold to the Ribera family. Godia bought it from Popular before Santander absorbed it.

It will be the second office building that Carmen Godia has built in 22@. In 2005, the businesswoman built one of the first modern office buildings in the Poblenou district, located at number 51 Calle Pujades. The property rents offices measuring approximately 100 square meters to small businesses. Carmen Godia invests through her holding company G3T.

Original Story: EjePrime

Translation: Richard Turner

Oaktree Puts San Fernando Business Park on Sale for €120 Million

27 March 2018

The US fund intends to sell the Madrid office complex, acquired three years ago as part of the Gaudí Project. The deal could be finalised before the summer.

Oaktree wants to sell the San Fernando Business Park and is putting the Madrid office complex on the market. The fund acquired the property three years ago as part of the Gaudí Project loan portfolio, in which the Hotel Arts de Barcelona was auctioned, among other assets. The company’s objective is to net around 120 million euros for the asset in a deal that it expects to finalise before the summer.

The fund acquired the San Fernando Business Park from the German bank FMS Wertmanagement, in a large loan portfolio sale valued at €750 million and composed of assets from every real estate segment.

Oaktree took over the business park in Madrid, which was managed by Goodman at the time and had €180 million in debts. The firm negotiated an undisclosed reduction in the debt, though El Confidencial speculated that it could have reached 40%.

Gaudí consisted of 18 loans, two of which were linked to Portuguese assets, and Oaktree is now looking to turn a profit on one of them. The complex for sale, located in San Fernando de Henares, has 86,000 square meters of area and thirteen buildings, together with 2,750 parking spaces.

The deal comes a few weeks after Hispania put its portfolio of offices on the market. In total, the socimi aims to raise between 500 million and 600 million euros for a plot of land and 25 buildings.

Original Story: EjePrime

Translation: Richard Turner

Land for the Commercial Centre at Rabanales 21 Sold

24 March 2018

The technology park will receive €1.4 million, a lifeline for the company.

Retesa has bought the plot of land at Rabanales 21, where a shopping centre will be built. Representatives of that company and the Córdoba Science and Technology Park signed the deed of sale for the IDR-4 plot, which was the subject of a breakthrough in the land-use plan at the end of last year. Rabanales 21 will receive 1.4 million euros in the transaction, which will come as a lifeline for the company that manages the technology park. The operation originated in 2014, the year in which Retesa and Rabanales 21 reached a pre-agreement in which Retesa paid an initial €600,000. The success of the deal was conditioned to the approval of the change of the land-use plan, which was finally approved by the Plenary last December.

From now on, Retesa has all the requirements completed to carry out the hiring of operators for its Rabanales Plaza shopping centre. Sources at the company hope to focus on the process after Easter. The developers hope to have the project “as soon as possible.”

The mayor, Isabel Ambrosio; the president of Rabanales 21, Manuel Pineda; and the sole administrator of Retesa, Jesús Sánchez Onieva were present at the signing of the deed. Pineda stressed that “the finalisation of this operation is an injection of liquidity for the company, which will provide stability for the future while reinforcing its viability plan, which already reflects the income from this sale.” For its part, the mayor said that “one of the main commitments in the park’s viability plan has been met,” which she considers “fundamental for the development of an economic model for our city based on innovation and the knowledge industry.”

In addition to the commercial space, the project’s developers will build a 2,823-square-meter R+D+i building that Rabanales 21 will manage and in which companies will be able to rent space.

Original Story: Diário Córdoba – Isabel Leña

Translation: Richard Turner

CBRE: Hotel Inv’t Reached Record Figure of €3.75bn in 2017

29 December 2017 – Europa Press

Investment in the hotel sector in Spain grew by 83% in 2017 compared to the previous year, to reach a total transaction volume of €3.75 billion, according to data from the consultancy firm CBRE Hotels.

The cumulative figure represents a historical record in the Spanish market, exceeding the previous record set in 2015. The increase is primarily due to strong demand from investors to buy and capitalise hotel assets, whereby taking advantage of the economic and real estate recovery in Spain.

According to CBRE Hotels, 190 hotel assets were sold in Spain in 2017, up by 23% compared to 2016, which represented an increase of 25% in terms of the number of rooms sold (28,000). Moreover, a further 2,200 future rooms were also sold last year in buildings and projects still under construction.

The most sought-after hotel assets were 4-star establishments, accounting for 42% of all investments.

The Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands accounted for almost 40% of all investments

In terms of the main investment destinations in the hotel sector, the Canary Islands (21%) and the Balearic Islands (18%), together with Madrid (17%) led the ranking, followed by Barcelona and Málaga. The most significant changes compared to 2016 were seen in Barcelona and the two island regions, which went from accounting for 36% to 15% in the case of the former and from 24% (combined) to 39% in the case of the latter.

In terms of the type of properties, holiday hotels accounted for 60% of the total compared with 40% urban properties. On the other hand, buyers invested in individual assets in 60% of cases, rather than in portfolios (40%).

Regarding the type of buyers or investors that acquired the most hotel assets last year, including not only hotels but also tourist apartments, aparthotels and land and buildings destined for hotel use, institutional investors participated in 55% of operations, followed by private entities and family offices, with 22% of transactions, and other hotel chains, with 21%.

Main operations

The largest operation of the year involved HI Partners, the hotel platform that Banco Sabadell recently sold to Blackstone for more than €630 million. The change of owner of Edificio España also hit the headlines – it was acquired by Riu Hotels & Resorts for €272 million. And finally, the Wave portfolio, owned by Starwood Capital and Meliá, comprising 4 hotels in Lanzarote, Ibiza, Torremolinos and Mallorca, was sold in the middle of the year to London & Regional Properties, on advice from CBRE (…).

“The excellent performance of the main tourism markets and the excess liquidity in the capital market have led to a historic year with more than 150 transactions and where institutional players have been the protagonists once again”, explained the National Director of CBRE Hotels, Jorge Ruiz.

Moreover, he added that “the outlook is very positive and we expect to see more concentration in the market in 2018 and a renewed interest in the tourism industry in our country”.

Original story: Europa Press

Translation: Carmel Drake

Ministry of Defence has Earned €28M from Property Sales since 2012

10 December 2017 – El Economista

The Ministry of Defence has obtained proceeds amounting to €28,382,264.77 in total (since 2012) from the sale of several properties that had been left in disuse in various Spanish autonomous regions and provinces.

That figure is reflected in a response from the Ministry (to which Servimedia has had access) to a question posed by the socialist members of parliament Miguel Ángel Heredia and Zaida Cantera to find out how much money has been obtained from the auction and sale of Ministry buildings from 2012 to date.

In its response, the Ministry of Defence explains that on 25 April 2012, it auctioned a building in Tarifa (Cádiz) that had housed a Residential Property for Non-Commissioned Officers for €1,408,676.99.

Meanwhile, on 5 November 2013, the Ministry sold the building that had housed the Armies’ Cultural Centre along with the property that hosted the Janer Naval Shooting School, both in Cádiz, for €881,880.22 and €6,754,907.15, respectively.

In turn, on 2 July 2015, the Ministry auctioned the building in which the ‘Son Simonet’ barracks used to be located, for €5,550,000; whilst on 5 November of the same year, it auctioned the headquarters of the Residential building for Non-Commissioned Officers in Palma de Mallorca for €6,311,003.07. Finally, on 2 December 2017, it sold a property located on Calle Velázquez, 107, in Madrid (pictured above) for €7,475,797.34.

Original story: El Economista

Translation: Carmel Drake