Healthcare Activos Adds Nursing Home in Salamanca to Portfolio

8 February 2019

The investment fund, which specialises in real estate assets in the health and dependency sector, recently finalised the acquisition of the Sauvia residence.

Healthcare Activos, a Spanish investment fund specialising in real estate assets in the health and dependence sector, has just started 2019 with a  new acquisition in Salamanca. The asset is the group’s fourth in the region, according to a report today by PlantaDoce.

The company, led by the former CEO of Sarquavitae, Jorge Guarner, has finalised the acquisition of the Sauvia residence in the town of Villares de la Reina, six kilometres from Salamanca. The geriatric centre has 219 beds and an area of ​​11,646 square meters, according to sources at the company, which, however, declined to reveal the amount it paid for the asset.

Healthcare Activos takes over ownership of such residences and subsequently leases the properties to one of the principal nursing home operators in Spain, such as La Saleta Care, DomusVi, Amavir and Orpea, among others.

Healthcare Activos has a network of 23 nursing homes in Spain

The current tenant of the Sauvia centre is the La Saleta Care group, which acquired eight nursing homes in Salamanca last September from another operator, Esgra. One of those residences is Villares de la Reina, which opened in mid-2017.

The nursing home has private and public spaces (the latter arranged with the Regional Government of Castilla y León), for indefinite and temporary (holidays, weekends, specific stays) stays, including patient recoveries (postoperative, convalescence and injury).

Since its creation at the end of 2016, Guarner’s firm has already acquired 23 assets, 19 of which are currently operational and four are under construction or rehabilitation, with a total committed investment of 205 million euros.

Original Story: EjePrime – A. Escobar

Translation: Richard Turner

A Third of the León’s Business Land is Already Under Development

6 October 2018

Almost half of the land available in business parks and industrial states has already been sold, and less than 18% is still available.

A third of the land in León that is zoned for business uses is already currently under development, while almost half has already been sold and a little less than 18% is still waiting for economic initiatives. However, the occupancy of industrial land presents significant differences in saturation and demand between some industrial estate and others. The reduction in the price of some of these lands seems designed to encourage the installation of certain initiatives, though the preferences of employers are also clear when selecting a location, and they are not always related to the price.

In general, it has not been easy to absorb the “significant expansion of industrial land generated between 2004 and 2007 by all operators, which doubled their supply,” the Economic and Social Council of Castilla y León noted. This affects the excess land available in the industrial estates promoted by the municipality, whereby, on the whole, the Community tripled the supply of business land, “becoming the largest operator at the regional level, with more than a third of the total supply” in the market.

In the case of the province of León, that supply was added to the investment of mining funds in this type of infrastructure in the basins, which increased the available supply of land at a time when the financial crisis began to take hold. The result was that more than half of the industrial parks in the province have less than ten companies operating in them, and many of them have not managed to bring in a single tenant, according to an analysis carried out by the Association of Owners and Entrepreneurs of the Leon Industrial Estate. (Apepil).

According to CES, there has been a “strong push” in the sale of industrial land since 2016, which means that on average the occupancy rate in the Community has reached 60%.

This percentage has not been reached in the province, according to the data of the council the occupancy rate in the business land in the province is 49.5% (something more than seven million square meters); while almost 4.7 million are in the project phase, 33% of the total. The rest, just over 2.5 million, which accounts for less than 18% of the land, is still available.

In total, the province’s business land adds up to almost 19.6 million square meters and is the third largest supplier of infrastructure of this type of the Community, behind Valladolid and Burgos, which head the regional ranking. More than five million square meters are non-exploitable surfaces (green areas, roads, sidewalks, roundabouts, …).

In the case of León, the town councils that have developed most of the land for “industrial” use (though industries are not always installed); with more than 7 million square meters spread over 27 industrial estates. Initiatives by municipal and private capital add another seven industrial estates and almost another two million square meters.

The Institute of Business Competitiveness (ICE, former ADE) of Castilla y León, a subsidiary of the Junta, totals more than 4.7 million square meters, and more than one million of them are still available despite the price reduction of available land approved by the Junta more than two years ago, in April 2016.

The infrastructure developed by the private sector also have an important weight, almost three million square meters, of which only one million are occupied. The best performance was obtained by the state industrial land agency Sepes, which has almost 2.9 million square meters in its industrial estates in León, and an almost non-existent available area compared with the rest of the developers.

The CES noted that a year ago, the plenary session of the Cortes unanimously approved the promotion of the León Technology Park.

Original Story: Diário de León – María J. Muñiz

Photo: Ces. Ramiro

Translation: Richard Turner

Castilla & León Reclassifies 28,315 hectares of Buildable Land Back to Rural Use

6 October 2018 – El Confidencial

Torquemada in Palencia has 989 inhabitants and sufficient buildable land on which to construct 162,000 homes. Coca in Segovia has 1,863 inhabitants and sufficient buildable land on which to construct 114,000 homes. Valladolid capital has 299,715 inhabitants and sufficient land on which to construct 217,293 new homes. They are just three simple examples of the urban planning absurdity seen in recent decades that is still present in almost every municipality in Spain.

Since the 1980s, and especially since the beginning of this century, town halls, in particular those in rural areas, have reclassified thousands of hectares of rural land to buildable land, on mass, in the hope that, during the boom times there would be a bureaucracy saving for the property developers, which would encourage them to invest, in both homes and industry. But the bubble burst (…) and thousands of buildable hectares were left over, converted today in a kind of weird joke.

Now, the Junta de Castilla y León wants to recover all of that land to return it to what it always was, agricultural and forestry land without any pretensions of being home to long rows of terraced houses or enormous industrial estates. The regional government has established three phases for the change of its land uses on mass.

It undertook the first phase in 2016, converting 10,000 hectares, and on 18 October this year, it will undertake the second phase, affecting 28,315 hectares, equivalent to half of the island of Ibiza or more than half of La Rioja. In total, 87 municipalities including several provincial capitals with capacity for one million potential homes that will now never see the light. The final mass change is planned for 2022. Goodbye then to the reckless optimism of the past; hello to a different future, one characterised by depopulation, which threatens to erase thousands of towns from the map (…).

“This is not Marbella, it was never realistic to think that large companies or property developers were going to come here to build homes. We have an industrial estate with five companies and we have lost 100 inhabitants in the last five years. A town cannot work miracles”, explains Jorge Domingo González, mayor of Torquemada, the rural municipality most affected by this second wave, which will modify 208 areas in Castilla y León (only 45 of them are industrial plots of land) on the basis of the urban planning law approved in 2014. “All of that land was reclassified not to build homes but to facilitate investment (…)”, explains the mayor of Torquemada.

Even so, many mayors did take advantage of the change to approve large residential developments, always under the suspicion, and sometimes rightly so, that they were going to be built with the sole objective of speculation and receiving an illegal bonus. That is where hundreds of ghost urbanisations in the middle of nowhere stemmed from; many are half-built, some even lack roads, but all have now been converted into a burden for municipalities, which do not have enough money to demolish them (…).

The town halls will not see any great benefits from this measure, but the owners of the land will do, since they will save a decent amount by no longer having to pay IBI (property tax) on urban land but having to do so on rural land, which is much cheaper. “In this way, we avoid uncertainties that have no sense in being maintained”, said Marinero…..

There is no record of any owner submitting claims against this change of use, although they have had four years to do so. That in itself is a clear sign that times have changed and that no one in the towns expects to win the lottery. If anything, they now just dream of not disappearing, to avoid being dragged away by the rural exodus.

Original story: El Confidencial (by David Brunat)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Sareb Puts 209 Assets Up For Sale, Including 37 Hotels

21 July 2017 – Cinco Días

Sareb has launched a campaign to sell a portfolio of 209 properties. The portfolio includes commercial premises, warehouses, offices and 37 hotels, located primarily in the interior of Spain.

The entity has already taken advantage of the increasing interest in the hotel sector to sell Hotel Parque Central de Valencia this week to the Hoteles Playa Senator chain. The four-star complex, located in the capital of Valencia, has 192 rooms and 128 parking spaces.

The entity has launched the so-called “Your business project…starts here” campaign and has also created a website www.sarebterciarios.com, with information about the 209 assets up for sale. The properties are located across 15 autonomous regions, although the majority can be found in Madrid and Castilla y León.

Most of the hotels are actually located in the latter region. The cheapest is located in Mombeltrán, a small town in Ávila; the so-called Real Posada estate is on the market for €528,000. At the other end of the spectrum, the tourist complex with the highest price is located in Las Palmas, comprising 103 apartments; its asking price exceeds €6 million.

The most expensive asset up for sale as part of this campaign is located in the north of Madrid: an office building worth €18.9 million. In the same autonomous region, the bad bank is also selling the cheapest office of the 33 on offer: a unit close to the Plenilunio shopping centre, which has an appraisal value of €80,000.

In terms of the 97 commercial assets, Madrid is also the autonomous region that is home to the most, with 14. Noteworthy properties include the former Cines Cristal on Calle Bravo Murillo, which is being sold for €6.7 million. Behind the capital in this ranking comes Cataluña with 13 assets and Valencia and Andalucía with 12 properties each. The most affordable commercial space is located in Las Palmas; that property is worth €160,000.

Of the 42 industrial warehouses up for sale, half are located along the Mediterranean Coast, 12 are in Cataluña and 9 are in the Comunidad Valencia. The most expensive warehouse is located in Polinya, Barcelona, and its asking price is €7.6 million. By contrast, the cheapest is being sold for €11,003 and is located in Betera, Valencia.

Original story: Cinco Días (by Fernando Cardona)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Solvia: The 2 “Castillas” Are The Black Sheep Of The RE Recovery

24 September 2015 – El Confidencial

Spain’s real estate market is very heterogeneous. There is nothing new about that. Madrid, Barcelona, the Costa del Sol and the (Balearic and Canary) Islands have all been showing signs of recovery for several months now, in terms of prices and the launch of new property developments.

Nevertheless, there are other areas where the desired recovery is not happening yet and other still where it is not even expected to happen, at least in the short term. The two Castillas (Castilla-La Mancha and Castilla y León) are two of these regions. The key drivers of the recovery have not been seen there yet and prices continue to be subject to downwards pressure. Or at least, those are the findings of ‘Solvia Market View‘, the first report about the real estate market prepared by Banco Sabadell’s servicer.

“Castilla-La Mancha is a market that is not showing any signs of recovery yet, since it has a large stock and a significant number of assets for sale, which are continuing to drive prices down. A slight increase in prices is only being observed in the historical centres of certain provincial capitals, such as Toledo and Cuenca, mainly due to the shortage of supply in these locations..but that is it”, explains Javier García del Río, CEO of Solvia.

Castilla y León finds itself in a very similar situation. The first timid signs of recovery are only being seen in a handful of towns and cities, where there is a shortage of supply and demand has been withheld – buyers have been waiting for prices to bottom out or have not been able to obtain financing until now. (…). According to García del Río, the drivers of the recovery are weak in these areas (Valladolid and Salamanca) and the demographic make-up does not help the recovery in demand, therefore the volume of activity is still very limited. (…).

High expectations in the País Vasco

Despite the sluggish behaviour in the two Castillas, Solvia has identified a certain degree of expectation in other parts of the peninsula, such as in the País Vasco. In Guipúzcao, for example, constructors are starting to build small developments, although the market is still quite slow there. Meanwhile, in Vizcaya, prices are stabilising for both new and second hand homes, and sales volumes are flat, according to Solvia. However, it points out that no new developments are being started there yet, unlike in Madrid for example. (…).

The stock of homes to be absorbed in Álava is still plentiful. “The financial entities (Kutxa, Caja Laboral) are starting some new property developments, which will be sold at a reasonable rate if they are marketed at competitive prices and are supported by financing”, says Javier García del Río. Meanwhile, in La Rioja, the market is normalising, especially in the north of the region, since as well as primary residences, it also supplies second homes for people from the País Vasco.

Sales have increased in Logroño, with competitive prices and a normalisation in terms of financing, although there is still a sizeable stock of new homes there. Finally, Navarra is a market that is still relatively inactive, with few operations overall; meanwhile, there has been a significant reduction in stock in Aragón and several property developments are being started at competitive prices. (…).

Finally, in Galicia and the northwest of Spain, particularly in A Coruña, there is a limited supply and reasonable demand for homes at affordable prices. In Vigo, there has not been a real estate boom, due to the suspension of the general (housing) plan during the crisis, but there is demand for finished products, whilst in Gijón, there is demand for homes in central, well-located areas.

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation: Carmel Drake