Atlético de Madrid Sells Land By Former Stadium to Azora and CBRE GIP

20 July 2019 – Richard D. K. Turner

Azora has entered a partnership with CBRE Global Investment to acquire two plots of land from the Atlético de Madrid football club for approximately 100 million euros. The two firms plan to build a 340-home development on the site in Mahou Calderón.

The area formerly housed the Vicente Calderón stadium and a brewery. In 2008, both companies reached an agreement with the Madrid City Council to transform the area into a new 2,000-home residential development. A decade later, and after a series of changes, Atlético de Madrid sold two of the three plots it owns, where plans exist for a total of 129,000 square meters of residences, 79,900 m2 of parks and gardens and 12,800 m2 of facilities and public spaces.

Azora and CBBRE will now develop two residential complexes with a total of 340 homes, involving an additional investment of 11 million euros in basic infrastructure costs. Gestilar will act as project manager and marketing agent.

Original Story: Expansión – Rocío Ruiz

Azora Launches a Vehicle to Invest €250M in Last Mile Logistics Hubs

9 January 2019 – Eje Prime

Azora is launching itself into the last mile logistics sector. The real estate manager has launched a vehicle to invest €250 million in premises located in the centre of cities with the aim of facilitating urban distribution and responding to the boom in e-commerce.

According to the company’s plans, the first investments will take place during the first quarter of this year. Azora will be responsible for the vehicle and will hold a minority stake in it. Meanwhile, the consultancy firm CBRE will be responsible for designing it and for supplying the real estate services, according to Expansión.

Until now, Azora and CBRE have identified almost thirty assets that fit their investment objectives until 2021. Currently, both companies are holding negotiations to purchase those properties, which include disused furniture stores, parking lots, dealerships, workshops and shopping centres inside the M-30 in Madrid and within Las Rondas in Barcelona. The properties must also have a surface area of more than 800 m2.

The assets will subsequently be leased to major logistics operators and to other transport companies, as well as to merchants and distribution companies under long-term lease contracts.

With more than €4.5 billion in assets under management, Azora is continuing to back the real estate sector after breaking its alliance with Hispania. Since then, the company has taken advantage of its experience in the sector to back the residential rental segment through the creation of a joint venture with CBRE Global Investment and Madison to achieve a portfolio of 10,000 homes within the next few years.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

From Greystar to GSA, a Who’s Who of Investors in Spain’s Market for Student Residences

27 August 2018

With returns of 5.5%, the student housing market has become the new El Dorado of the real estate market. A long list of foreign funds are beginning to invest in this sector in Spain, and the supply of accommodations is expected to rise by almost 10% up to 2019.

Anglo-Saxon funds and operators dominate the wave of foreign capital that is taking on the market for student residences, one that offers returns of 5.5% in Spain. Just in 2017, investments grew from 50 million to 600 million euros.

The supply of assets in this alternative market has increased by 3.5% since 2015, boasting 93,563 beds in the market at the close of last year. Forecasts expect the sector to grow by another 1.5% this year and up to 7.7% at the end of 2019, according to data from the consultancy JLL. Which are the funds that dominate the sector? And who set to join this latest rush for gold?

The high point of the new wave of international investment in Spain’s resis (student residences) was reached at the end of 2017. Until December, Resa was considered the king of the residential market for university students in the country. It was owned by for years by the firm Lazora (Azora) until the arrival of the joint venture formed by AXA Real Assets and CBRE Global Investment Partners funds, which made an offer for roughly 500 million euros. Subsequently, the company’s 37 assets, distributed among 33 buildings and four undeveloped plots of land, were taken over by the specialised operator Greystar, partner of AXA Real Assets and CBRE GI.

Greystar’s place at the top of the list remains firm, but a long list of other players are vying to take the top spot. The British operators GSA and Collegiate, and the Luxembourg fund manager Corestate all have ambitious plans for growth in Spain.

GSA will invest 300 million euros in new acquisitions in the Spanish market, as reported by EjePrime. The international student-accommodation giant expects to be managing 10,000 beds in Spain within five years’ time. For now, the company has two projects underway in Barcelona, ​​in a total investment of thirty million euros, and is already working on plans to enter the market in Madrid, as well as exploring other cities such as Salamanca along with regional capitals in the south and north of the country.

For its part, Collegiate allied itself with the Spanish group Early Capital at the beginning of the year to enter Barcelona. The operator will manage the student residences at the Finestrelles complex, in Esplugues de Llobregat, acquired by Early last autumn, its third asset after the ones it already owns in Madrid and Valencia. Now, the company is looking for opportunities in Bilbao, Malaga and Granada.

Corestate also flew in from Luxembourg. Like the more than 473,000 university students who arrive every year in the country, searching for accommodation, the fund is looking to enrol in the sector. After beginning work on its first two projects, in Madrid (inauguration in September) and Seville, it is now finalising the purchase of a plot of land on which it is to develop another 400 beds. The manager’s goal is to become one of the top three players in the sector by 2020, with more than a thousand beds spread across the country. The company is already analysing the acquisition of another half a dozen plots of land to attain the goal it set for itself.

The Student Hotel is another of the major European players that have begun to take a close look at Spain. The Dutch operator has announced plans to invest 240 million euros in Spain and has already acquired two assets in Barcelona and will debut its first project in Madrid in 2019.

The Spanish ‘resi’ listed on the MAB

Although much of the capital that is being allocated to the student residence market in Spain comes from abroad, the local players are also looking for their piece of the pie. The Lofttown and Syllabus, a specialised vehicle created by Urbania International, are two clear examples of emerging, local interest in the sector.

Lofttown started its journey in the picturesque neighbourhood of Gràcia in Barcelona. Presided over by Santiago de Cruilles, the company already has two more projects in the Catalan capital in which it invested 24 million euros, EjePrime reported. The company is also analysing a possible debut in other cities around the country, such as Madrid, Girona and Valencia.

For its part, Syllabus is already currently one of the most active investors in the student residence market. Created last April by Urbania, the vehicle expects to invest up to 200 million euros in the development of new student residences in Spain. The company hired the former CEO of Hill International, Jeffrey Sújar, and has already made its first acquisitions, in Valencia and Malaga.

In addition, the university market in Spain is undergoing such a boom that a company that focuses on the market is also listed on the local stock exchange. Student Properties debuted on the Mercado Alternativo Bursátil (MAB) last December. Currently, the company owns a single asset, located in the district of Salamanca in Madrid.

Other possible arrivals

During this year and, above all, the one that is coming, new players are expected to enter the market for university residences. On such arrival is the American giant CA Ventures, which has Spain squarely in its sights within a 500-million-euro European investment plan.

Other institutional investors that are interested in the market include the Belgian group Life, the American investment fund Round Hill and the British operator Amro. The latter is looking for a partner in the national market to invest up to €300 million to create a portfolio of 5,000 beds in southern Europe.

Original Story: EjePrime – Jabier Izquierdo

Translation: Richard Turner

 

Family Office Puts Tesla’s Store on c/Serrano Up For Sale for €7M

18 April 2018 – Eje Prime

The retail sector is hotting up in Madrid. A Spanish family office has put up for sale the store at number 3 Calle Serrano, which is occupied by Tesla, the company specialising in electric cars and led by Elon Musk. Although sources close to the operation have explained to Eje Prime that the process to receive offers has already begun, the estimated price of the asset is around €7 million.

This store has been occupied by Tesla since last September after it signed a lease contract that will continue in force following the sale. The asset has a retail surface area of 247 m2 spread over two floors. There, Tesla has a showroom, a warehouse and the group’s offices in Spain. According to real estate market sources, the consultancy firm CBRE is exclusively leading the sales process.

In recent months, the retail sector has been reactivated in the Spanish capital, with both the placing of premises on the market and the renovation of assets for their subsequent rental. The latest to be added to the portfolio of establishments for sale was the branch that Bankia owns at number 1 Calle Alcalá.

Although the bank already initiated an auction, which was attended by funds such as Arcano and real estate groups such as Renta, who were offering approximately €18 million for the premises, Bankia has decided to wipe the slate clean and launch a new auction process, through which it hopes to raise at least €20 million.

The asset, which, given its façade appeals more to restaurant operators than fashion retailers, is spread over two floors: the first floor spans 458 m2, whilst the basement measures 405 m2.

And from premises for sale to premises sold. In March, the fund manager IBA Capital, together with CBRE Global Investment, finally completed the sale of number 9 Calle Preciados, in Madrid, to the real estate investment vehicle of the insurance company Generali, Generali Real Estate. The Italian group paid €100 million for the asset, which is going to house Pull&Bear’s future flagship store on this high street, one of the most expensive in Spain for opening a store (…).

Investor appetite in 2018 

After closing 2017 with a total investment of €3.5 billion, the sector started 2018 with retail assets up for sale worth €2.5 billion. Moreover, during the course of this year, the volume of retail space on the national map is forecast to increase by 500,000 m2.

At the moment, shopping centres worth €2 billion are up for sale, along with high street products worth another €500 million. This situation guarantees a high degree of product availability for the segment, which is ideal at a time when Spain is very much in the firing line of international investors.

The influence of the retail market on the tertiary sector in 2017 is evidenced by the statistic that 38% of all transactions completed in this market involved retail assets, allowing retail assets to exceed office buildings for the first time ever.

With a volume increase of 36% over the last year, several large shopping centre openings are scheduled for 2018 including Open Sky in Madrid, which will see the arrival of Compagnie de Phalsbourg in Spain, after investing €160 million in the complex.

Similarly, in the Community of Madrid, the shutters will be lifted on X-Madrid, owned by Merlin, and in Málaga, McArthurGlen and Sonae Sierra will inaugurate a new designer outlet centre in the capital of the Costa del Sol. The stock of retail surface area in Spain amounts to 16.5 million m2, up by 1.4% YoY.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

GSA Buys Oaktree’s Student Halls In Madrid & Barcelona

21 June 2017 – Expansión

GSA (Global Student Accommodation) has reached an agreement with Oaktree Capital to purchase its student halls of residence in Spain (which are owned and operated by an entity called Nexo). This operation, whose financial details have not been revealed, comes less than a year after GSA purchased Oaktree’s platform of halls of residence in the United Kingdom, comprising 7,100 beds, back in September 2016.

Both operations have been advised by the real estate consultancy firm JLL.

Nexo is one of the largest developers and operators of student halls of residence in Spain and currently owns a portfolio of approximately 2,300 beds located in Madrid and Barcelona – split between operational assets and those under construction.

The firm has three operational halls of residence in Madrid – Galdós, with 370 beds; El Faro, with 358 beds; and Claraval, with 186 beds – as well as the Lope de Vega University Residence, also located in the Spanish capital, which will open its doors in September 2017 and which will house 468 students, from both Spain and overseas.

The operation also includes two additional projects under development in Barcelona, which will be ready for use in 2019 and which increase the total number of beds to 2,234. The first centre, Barcelona Sants, will have 348 beds and the second, Campus Sur Diagonal, will have 504 beds.

Nicholas Porter, founder and President of GSA, said that the firm is continuing to fulfil its plans for rapid expansion in Europe with its focus on higher education markets.

Interest from funds in this segment has increased in recent months. In order to benefit from this situation, Azora and Grupo March have put RESA up for sale – it is the largest student residence management platform in Spain, with 9,000 beds – and interest has already been expressed by Axa, Round Hill, the Canadian pension fund CPPIB, CBRE Global Investment and Partners Group, amongst others.

Original story: Expansión (by R. Arroyo)

Translation: Carmel Drake