Núñez i Navarro Builds a Prime Residential Development on Paseo de Gracia

30 May 2018 – Eje Prime

The industry stalwart Núñez i Navarro wants to generate returns from some of its old investments. The company has started work on the renovation of one of the buildings that it acquired in Barcelona before the crisis to convert it into a residential property. The asset is located at number 125 Paseo de Gracia, one of the most prime areas of the Catalan capital for the residential sector, as sources at the company explained to Eje Prime. Moreover, Núñez i Navarro has more than a dozen new developments under construction and on the market.

The group, founded more than 65 years ago, expects to begin handing over the new homes at the end of this year. The building, which used to house offices, will comprise around twenty apartments with between one and three bedrooms. These homes, whose average price has not been revealed, will be mainly targeted at international clients and will be available for rent.

Núñez i Navarro acquired this property during the process to buy a batch of assets at the end of the 1990s. The company purchased a portfolio of four buildings in Barcelona from the insurance company Eagle Star for €26.6 million. That lot contained three buildings on Paseo de Gracia, at numbers 125, 127 and 129, as well as the property at number 641 Gran Vía de les Corts Catalanes (…).

“This project on Paseo de Gracia joins the twenty or so other renovation jobs that Núñez i Navarro has carried out in Barcelona, highlights of which include the Andreu Tower, also known as La Rotonda, the Torre Enric Cera, the Casa Lleó i Morera, Hotel 1898 on la Rambla, the only colonial style hotel in Barcelona, Hotel Gran Vía, and the Can Trías de Bes farmhouse in Sant Joan Despí, amongst others”, explain sources at the group (…).

Diversification 

Although the group’s main business is residential, the company has diversified somewhat over the years in order to generate new revenue streams. The company has a major presence in the office sector in Cataluña, with a particular concentration in the city of Barcelona. For example, its portfolio contains assets such as number 35 Paseo de Gracia (Casa Lleó Morera) and number 20 Plaza Cataluña.

The group is also strong in other businesses such as industrial warehouses, car parks and hotels (…).

Financial information 

The company, the largest unlisted real estate firm in Cataluña, saw its profits soar in 2016 to €33.1 million, compared with €12.9 million in the previous year. In this way, the group returned to positive growth, coming close to its best ever result, recorded in 2007, when it generated profits of €48.6 million (…).

By contrast, Núñez i Navarro’s turnover worsened in 2016. The company generated revenues of €110 million, down by 5.1% compared to the same period a year earlier, when its sales amounted to €116 million. The company’s consolidated own funds amount to €595 million.

Original story: Eje Prime (by C. Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Asur’s Two Hotels Go Up for Auction for €70M

30 November 2017 – ABC

The judge of Mercantile Court number 2 in Sevilla, Pedro Márquez, has approved the liquidation plan for the company Ámbito Sur Hoteles (Asur), which includes the direct sale, by auction, of the two production units associated with the four-star hotels that the company owns in La Línea de la Concepción (Cádiz) and Isla Antilla (Huelva). Both are operated by the chain Ohtels. Asur, which also owns land in Manilva as well as 81 tourist apartments in La Línea, filed for liquidation after accumulating debt of €90 million, most of which corresponded to loans from Banco Popular (now Santander), Cajasur, Sabadell and Sareb (the so-called bad bank).

The Hotel Asur Campo de Gibraltar and its adjacent car park are worth €21 million, although the debt associated with that production unit amounts to €20.7 million, mostly loaned from Cajasur. Meanwhile, Hotel Asur Islantilla Suites & Spa has an asking price of €48.7 million and that is offset by loans amounting to €41.5 million, of which €38 million was initially granted by Banco Popular (now Santander). That hotel also houses a conference centre.

Although several creditor banks made a request for the mortgage debt over the hotels to be foreclosed, the judge from the Mercantile Court has ruled for them to be sold as separate production units, relegating the mortgage foreclosure to a subsequent time if the auction is abandoned (…).

The bankruptcy administrator, in the hands of the law firm Maio Martínez Escribano, will receive offers for the hotels and the two plots of land in Manilva until 16 December. If by then it has not received any offers for more than 75% of the real value of the estates, then the period for the submission of offers will be extended by one month, to 16 January.

If an offer is received for less than 75% of the real value of the hotels, the main creditors (Cajasur in the case of the hotel in Campo de Gibraltar and Santander in the case of the hotel in Islantilla) will have to approve the operation. The bankruptcy administrator will have the power to choose the most favourable offer without having to obtain legal authorisation for the sale.

In the event that the two hotels are not sold directly through this first auction, the sale will be undertaken through a specialist entity, such as a real estate consultancy firm, which will be granted a five-month period to that end. If that sales option also fails, a “dación en pago” of the properties will be carried out. Only in the event that the hotels cannot be sold in that way either will the properties be auctioned off individually and not as production units.

The history of Asur

The company Asur was created in 2010 by the Basque group Bruesa Construcción and the Nazarene real estate company Baremos Área Inversiones (…).

Original story: ABC (by M. J. Pereira)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Terrassa Plaça Retail Park Will Open On 3 November

27 October 2017 – Press Release

Terrassa has a new retail park, in the form of Terrassa Plaça. With a gross leasable area (GLA) of 30,535 m2, the new complex will be officially inaugurated next Friday 3 November. The event will be attended by authorities from the Generalitat de Cataluña, the Town Hall of Terrassa and representatives of the centre’s operators and Citygrove, the property developer.

The new centre is backed by an investment amounting to €30 million, the creation of more than 500 jobs and will house an extensive and varied retail offer: from the distribution of consumer goods and construction materials to fashion and restaurants. Citygrove’s aim with Terrassa Plaça is to cover the growing demand from the local population for these types of services. An entire commercial offer centralised in a single space.

Famous brands

This new project will open its doors with the following brands in situ: Bricomart, Mercadona, Globomoda, Altafit Gym Club, Gifi, Kiwoko, Barimueble, Sprinter, La Tagliatella, Pause&Play, Maxcolchón, Drim and Petrocat. All of them are looking to take an important step in their expansion here and to establish themselves as iconic labels in the minds of consumers. That is especially true in the case of the Italian company Globomoda, which has chosen to open its first store in Cataluña in Terrassa Plaça.

The complex is located on a plot measuring 56,000 m2 delimited by Avenida del Vallès, Calle Navarra, Avenida de las Naciones and Calle Cantabria. Its construction has allowed for improvements to the transport network in the area, with the creation of a pedestrian crossing on Calle Cantabria (…). In addition, the retail park will have an electric vehicle charging station, plus 1,000 parking spaces for cars and 70 for bikes, as well as a new bus route. Within the next few days, a new bike path will be opened between the city centre and the retail park.

Terrassa Plaça is the city’s new commercial offer and represents one of the most ambitious projects from Citygrove, the Anglo-Saxon property developer who has shaped this project. A key player in the real estate sector in Europe, with offices in the UK and Germany, Citygrove backed Terrassa from day one with the aim of turning it into a commercial benchmark project for the city, which was demanding this type of facility.

Original story: Press Release

Translation: Carmel Drake

Mapfre Inaugurates Newly-Renovated Office Building In Plaza De La Independencia

26 October 2017 – Inmodiario

Mapfre has started the hand over to its tenants of the building on Plaza de la Independencia 6, in Madrid. Dokei RE prepared the execution and activity plans.

Dokei RE was awarded the full scope commission, including the writing of the due diligence report for the acquisition of the building, determining and limiting the risks of the development, logging the necessary urban planning queries given that the building is surrounded by several historical monuments, performing the Project Management services and coordinating all of the teams involved in the construction work.

The building, located in a unique position, in an unparalleled environment, has been renovated in accordance with the highest quality standards in terms of its finishes, installations, as well as sustainability. It has an A-rated Energy Certificate and a Gold Leed rating.

The property comprises open-plan floors, without any pillars, which allows for the maximum efficiency and natural light from 4 of the 5 façades (…).

With a total constructed surface area of 11,568 m2, of which 7,559 m2 is above ground and a useful surface area of 9,893 m2, “Plaza de la Independencia has sought to install the best acoustic and thermal insulation, and as such, all of the external windows and doors have been replaced and the insulation of the façades has been reinforced (…). Moreover, the use of a highly efficient air conditioning system has allowed us to obtain an A energy rating”, said Jesús Lanzón, Director at dokei RE (…).

The building has a car park, paved with resin and equipped with LED lighting; meanwhile, the basement level has parking space for bikes and a changing room/shower area.

Original story: Inmodiario

Translation: Carmel Drake

Lar España Secures Financing To Build Vidanova Parc Shopping Centre

22 September 2017 – Observatorio Inmobiliario

Lar España Real Estate has signed an agreement for the financing of the Vidanova Parc shopping centre located in Sagunto (Valencia). Under the terms of the contract, CaixaBank has granted the Socimi a €24 million loan to fund the construction of the shopping centre.

Building work on the shopping centre started in August last year, once the necessary preliminary phases had been completed to clean, prepare and urbanise the land. Vidanova Parc is expected to open its doors during the first half of 2018. The shopping centre will have a surface area of 120,000 m2, of which 44,252 m2 will be dedicated to retail and leisure. The centre will also have a car park with space for more than 2,300 vehicles.

Lar España says that more than 85% (of the space) at Vidanova Parc has already been leased. Specifically, the shopping centre’s future tenants include Leroy Merlin, Decathlon, C&A, Worten, Norauto, Burger King, Fifty Factory, Yelmo Cines and Urban Planet, along with another 30 brands to complement the food, sport, DIY, fashion, entertainment and leisure offering.

Sergio Criado, CFO at Lar España, highlighted his “satisfaction at having secured this new financing agreement, which is one of several to have been signed over the last few months, and which demonstrates the appeal of Lar España’s properties. In the case of Vidanova Parc, it also represents support for what is going to be one of the most important shopping centres in the region”.

Lar España’s investment in the project will amount to €53 million in total, in addition to the €40 million that the operators moving into the shopping centre are planning to invest. The complex will generate 1,000 jobs in total, split between direct and indirect roles, and the construction phase will create another 200 jobs.

Lar España Real Estate currently owns 31 real estate assets, whose value amounts to €1,448.2 million, of which €1,040.8 million corresponds to shopping centres, €178.6 million to office buildings, €83.3 million to logistics assets and €145.4 million to assets under construction, such as Vidanova Parc.

Original story: Observatorio Inmobiliario

Translation: Carmel Drake

Macquarie Will Complete Empark Purchase In Q4

31 July 2017 – Expansión

The Australian firm Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets has formalised, through the fund Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund, the purchase of 100% of the Spanish car park operator Empark. The acquisition is expected to be closed in the last quarter of the year. The fund will be the only shareholder of Empark, which comprises three business units and owns more than 535,000 parking spaces in 180 municipalities across six countries. Empark operates primarily in Spain and Portugal but is also present in Andorra, France, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

Original story: Expansión

Translation: Carmel Drake

Villar Mir Seeks 40 Luxury Brands For ‘Galería de Canalejas’

19 July 2017 – Eje Prime

More than nine million people visited Madrid in 2016. Of those, 4.6 million were foreigners. The museums, Royal Palace, Retiro Park and Santiago Bernabéu were some of the most popular attractions, although the centre of the capital took the biscuit, receiving the most visitors overall. This area is also home to the most luxurious hotels in Madrid and several more are currently being built there. Nevertheless, there is no shopping area to cater for these high-end visitors and hotel guests. And that is precisely the gap that the Canalejas complex wants to fill. And if it does so, the shopping arcade could revolutionise Madrid’s high street.

After more than ten years of abandon, the group of seven buildings located at the intersection of Calles Alcalá, Sevilla and San Jerónimo promises to become a wake-up-car for retail, especially fashion, in the centre of the capital. Promoted by OHL Desarrollos and Grupo Villar Mir, Madrid’s Canalejas Centre welcomed a new shareholder in February, with the arrival of the company Mohari Limited, in which the co-founder of Poker Stars, Mark Scheinberg owns a stake. His company purchased 50% of the complex for €225 million.

A Four Seasons hotel with 200 rooms, 22 private residences associated with the hotel, a 400-space car park and the shopping arcade will comprise the complex’s four main areas. The shopping arcade, which will link Calles Alcalá and Canalejas, will be the heart of the centre and has plans to welcome more than 2 million clients every year (of the 147 million people who move in the vicinity of the centre each year).

With a select client profile, the Galería de Canalejas will comprise a commercial space with a surface area of 15,000 m2, which will be home to more than 40 fashion, cosmetic/perfume and jewellery/watch brands (on the ground and first floors) as well as a restaurant area covering more than 3,000 m2 (on the lower ground floor).

Canalejas has already started to market the space and is getting ready to sign the first agreements with some of the high-end operators, which will take receipt of their stores in November 2018 ready to open their doors in 2019, at the same time as the rest of the complex.

There are no plans for any of the large retailers (such as Zara and Uniqlo) to open stores in the complex, given that the positioning of the centre and the space requirements of such players do not tally. According to the managers of the centre, the average asking prices for the stores are below the average for the area, given that the whole zone is conditioned by Preciados, the most expensive street in Madrid for opening retail premises.

With the aim of securing around forty brands to occupy the premises, which will measure between 40 m2 and 400 m2 each, Canalejas is looking for high-end, premium firms in the fashion, jewellery and cosmetics segments (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by P. Riaño)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Saba Wants To Complete A Major Purchase Before Its IPO

1 June 2017 – Expansión

Saba is analysing several major operations with the aim of growing in size before it debuts on the stock market, according to the plans that the company’s President, Salvador Alemany (pictured above, right) outlined yesterday, at the car park group’s General Shareholders’ Meeting.

“We are looking at operations that would allow us to grow significantly and which would take several months or years to complete; afterwards [with our debut on the stock market], we would see the results of all of the efforts that we have been making since 2011”, said Alemany yesterday, in response to two questions from the company’s two minority shareholders. For the time being, there is no specific timetable for the firm’s debut on the stock market – Saba set itself the objective at the same time that it was carved out from Abertis in 2011.

The CEO of Saba, Josep Martínez Vila (pictured above, left), confirmed that Empark is one of the operations under analysis, but that there are also others in the running. The advantage of acquiring that firm stems from the fact that it would allow Saba to double in size; by contrast, it would mean concentrating its business even more in Spain, which last year accounted for 71% of its turnover.

The group closed 2016 with turnover of €202 million, compared to €225 million in 2015, a year when it was still recording revenues from its logistics parks. Saba, which yesterday approved the distribution of an issue premium amounting to €20 million, earned €4 million from its ordinary activity, a figure that increases to €32.36 million with the profits from its logistics business.

The company, which was just awarded the contract to manage 12,000 parking spaces in three shopping centres in Chile, has also just agreed with the banks to improve the conditions of a €465 million loan.

Original story: Expansión (by A. Zanon)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Empark’s Owners Engage JP Morgan To Sell The Giant For €850M

19 May 2017 – Expansión

Empark is back on the market. The Portuguese controlling shareholders of the car park company have engaged JP Morgan to find a buyer for an entity worth around €850 million, on the basis of the prices and valuations of other similar transactions in the sector. Empark is the leading car park company in Spain with 500,000 parking spaces in the Iberian Peninsula, the United Kingdom and Turkey. The firm’s gross operating profit (EBITDA) amounts to €65 million and its debt, which the company has been restructuring over the last year, amounts to €475 million.

Following the most recent changes, Empark’s shareholder structure is still dominated by the Portuguese investors Silva & Silva, which own 78% of the company. The second largest shareholder is the Chinese conglomerate Haitong, with a 14% stake.

The company’s control vehicle is dominated by the founding families, who participate in the management of the group. The main executives of Empark are José Augusto Tavares, Pedro Mendes (Executive President) and Antonio Moura.

The last attempt to sell the company was made in 2015. Then, the company progressed to the stage of selecting a buyer, Vinci Park (Ardian), but the operation did not come to fruition. Vinci Park reported the breakdown in its negotiations to buy Empark in July of that year after finalising its due diligence work, which produced unsatisfactory findings. Ultimately, the company was concerned about Empark’s high exposure to town halls which, following the local elections held that year, were considering “re-municipalisation”.

Sources close to the fund Ardian say that they are not interested in the operation at the moment. The infrastructure investment giant put Indigo (formerly Vinci park) up for sale this year for around €3,000 million. The sale of Empark is quite complex, given that the shares of the car park company serve, in turn, to secure the shareholders’ personal loans.

According to sources close to the operation, the Portuguese shareholders have dragged the other shareholders into the sale and have been given until the beginning of October to find a buyer. They are keen to leverage the ‘drag along clause’ set out in the company’s shareholder agreements (which means that when a third party makes an offer to purchase the company by buying all of its share capital, then the shareholder that has the ‘drag along right’ may force the other shareholders to sell their stakes to the buyer).

Sources in the sector believe that if Pedro Mendes and his partners do not find an investor with a reasonable offer in time, Haitong may push ahead with the operation by itself or with one of Empark’s creditor banks. Deutsche Bank is one of the company’s latest lenders. The German bank manages the fund RREEF Infrastructure.

One of the possible candidates to analyse the purchase operation is the fund First State, which acquired España Parkia from the Nordic fund EQT and Mutua Madrileña in 2016 for just over €300 million. The US fund Alinda is also very active in Spain. It has made an offer to buy Isolux’s car park portfolio. Another candidate could be the Chinese firm Haitong

Original story: Expansión (by C. Morán)

Translation: Carmel Drake

17 Luxury Homes Go Up For Sale In Madrid

7 October 2016 – El Economista

The luxury housing market in Madrid is booming, however, the supply of newly built homes is very limited. In fact, José Abascal 48, located in the sought after Madrilenian neighbourhood of Chamberí is marketing itself as the only luxury development in the centre of the capital with an occupancy licence.

Knight Frank and Lucas Fox will be responsible for marketing the 17 homes that comprise this exclusive development. The properties will go on the market priced at between €600,000 and €5 million.

“Four units have already been reserved and we have 65 visits booked for the next few days”, explained Humphrey White, the CEO of Knight Frank in Spain. Given the product shortage and the high quality of these apartments, both consultancy firms expect that these homes will be sold very quickly.

The project, which comes onto the market today, is not what was originally designed for this nine-storey property, which was initially going to contain twice as many homes. “We have adapted the building to the current needs of the market, given that the previous plans were designed during the real estate boom”, explained Frédéric Mangeant, Director of Shaftesbury Asset Management in Spain. The fund is the owner of this property, which was constructed in the 1940s and will now set the bar for prime house prices in this area of Madrid.

The properties in José Abascal, 48 will be sold for between €6,000/sqm and €12,000/sqm following a comprehensive renovation, carried out by the architect firm Touza. It contains apartments ranging from 100 sqm properties with one bedroom to two- to five-bedroom attics and duplexes measuring more than 400 sqm in some cases, as well as some four-bedroom homes.

Behind the protected, neo-classical façade, which represents the bourgeois scenery of the street, the homes contain living rooms measuring between 70 sqm and 100 sqm, with large terraces, bedrooms with en suite bathrooms, dressing rooms and large kitchens with islands.

The common areas represent a particularly important part of this project. The building has a gym and 160 sqm of water, with a spa comprising a jacuzzi, sauna and Turkish bath. The new residents will also have a very large atrium with natural light, thanks to the skylight, and events may be held there on the ground floor.

The luxury of this development is also evident in the garage. With a robotised parking system, managed by the company Integral Park Systems (IPS), the residents of this building will not have to park their own vehicles and may also request their cars from their living rooms, because the homes are all automated.

(…). In this way, the software records the activity of each car and if several users tend to pick up their cars at 8am, the system will move the vehicles so that they are as close as possible to the pick up point at that time.

That is the icing on a cake that has already whetted the appetite of many potential buyers of luxury homes in Madrid.

Original story: El Economista (by Alba Brualla)

Translation: Carmel Drake