Montepino Snaps Up Two Plots of Land for Logistics Platforms in Castellbisbal

28 October 2019 – Montepino, a developer controlled by the Europroyev Group, has acquired two plots of land destined for logistics platforms in Castellbisbal, Barcelona. The consultancy CBRE advised Montepino on the transaction.

With this acquisition, the firm now has a total of 85,000 square meters of land in Catalonia, with the capacity to build two logistics platforms measuring 13,000 and 16,000 square meters, respectively.

Original Story: Eje Prime

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Investment Funds Eye Thomas Cook’s Assets in Spain

30 September 2019 – International investment funds are already circling over Thomas Cook’s assets in Spain after its bankruptcy last week. Investor interest is focusing on the Balearic Islands, where Cook operates about 20 units.

Blackstone has recently been the most active buyer in the Balearic Islands through its hotel division, HI Partners. The groups Atom Hotels, Portobello Capital, Covivio, CBRE Global Investors, Corum AM, Elaia Investment, Apple Leisure Group, KKR and Hispania are also active in the region.

Beyond the failure of Thomas Cook, a recent fall in tourist arrivals from Germany has also put pressure on some small and medium-sized operators, providing more fodder for the mill.

Original Story: Preferente

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

 

Blackstone to Sell its Socimi Corona for c. €220M

16 April 2019 – El Economista

Having spent the last 5 or 6 years accumulating one of the largest real estate portfolios in Spain, Blackstone is now starting to rotate some of its properties. To this end, it is looking to divest the Socimi Corona, which owns five office buildings – 3 in Madrid and 2 in Barcelona.

The US fund had previously put the 5 offices on the market as a portfolio, but has now decided to put them up for sale on an individual basis. As such, it hopes to generate revenues of €220 million, which would represent significant capital gains, since it acquired the group of assets (with the exception of the Delta Nova complex) for around €135 million from CBRE Global Investors in 2014.

Blackstone has already agreed the sale of the first property, the MB One Building in La Moraleja spanning a GLA of 22,129 m2, which Grosvenor is going to acquire for around €80 million.

Original story: El Economista (by Alba Brualla)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Azora Acquires HQ of the Former Cortefiel Group for €28.3M

24 January 2019 – Eje Prime

Another operation has been closed in the office market in Madrid. The Socimi GMP, controlled by the Montoro family and the sovereign fund of Singapore, has sold the building located at number 51 Calle Llano Castellano to Azora. The price of the operation amounted to €28.3 million.

The property now controlled by Azora, the real estate manager founded by Concha Osácar and Fernando Gumuzio, is occupied in its entirety by Tendam, previously known as the Cortefiel Group and owner of the fashion chains Cortefiel, Women’secret, Springfield and Pedro del Hierro.

The rental contract for the building, which has a gross leasable area of 23,108 m2 and 145 parking spaces, is due to expire in 2023.

The building was constructed in 1990 and had been controlled 100% by GMP since 2015. Until then, the property was in the hands of the real estate division of General Electric through the company Renta Gestión Fuencarral.

Its new owner, Azora, specialises in the investment and management of real estate assets for third parties and has a portfolio comprising more than €4.5 billion in assets. The company was the promoter of Hispania, the first Socimi to be constituted, which made its debut on the stock market in Spain in 2014.

Azora was considering its own stock market debut, but in the end, it suspended that process last year. Azora and Hispania ended their agreement last year, after Blackstone’s successful takeover of the Socimi.

Since then, the company has focused on the residential rental market through the creation of a joint venture with CBRE Global Investment and Madison to reach a portfolio of 10,000 homes over the coming years.

Azora manages the real estate portfolios of funds and wealthy investors, such as George Soros, CBRE Global Investors, Goldman Sachs, Axa Investment Management and Bank of Montreal, amongst others (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by P. Riaño and I. P. Gestal)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Barings Finalises Purchase of 4 Office Buildings from GreenOak

2 December 2018 – Eje Prime

Barings is on the verge of acquiring 100% of Avalon. The British fund manager is finalising the purchase from GreenOak of the four office buildings that it owns in the Madrilenian business park. If the operation goes ahead, the British company will become the owner of the nine properties that make up the complex.

Avalon Business Park is an enclosed business park, with a total surface area of 47,000 m2 and 1,000 parking spaces, located in the Julián Camarillo area of Madrid. Barings has been present in the complex since the end of the summer when it purchased five office buildings, with a combined surface area of 25,785 m2, from Meridia Capital for €73 million.

Now, the fund manager wants to advance with its growth plan in Spain by acquiring the four remaining properties, owned by GreenOak, which have a combined surface area of 21,170 m2. The US fund has owned the assets since 2015 when it purchased them from Banco Santander for €40 million. Almost four years later, the price of the properties amounts to around €60 million, according to reports from Expansión.

Barings arrived in the Spanish market three years ago and has already undertaken several investments in other real estate segments. In November 2017, the company purchased a logistics centre in Plaza (Zaragoza) from Deka, which it added to another logistics asset that it acquired in Madrid in April last year for €35 million.

The fund manager also has a portfolio of retail assets, which includes the Berceo shopping centre in Logroño (La Rioja). The British group acquired that complex, which has a gross leasable area (GLA) of more than 34,000 m2 at the beginning of 2018, after reaching an agreement with CBRE Global Investors, the former owner.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Montepino Invests €6M+ in a New Logistics Centre in Madrid

10 September 2018 – Eje Prime

Montepino is continuing to invest in the logistics sector in Madrid. The property developer has just finalised the construction of a logistics and innovation centre on the Alcobendas industrial estate, in which it has invested €6 million.

The space measures 6,300 m2, comprising a warehouse spanning 5,000 m2 and an adjoining building for offices. The plot, which will house the distribution operations for CooperVision on the peninsula, has a parking area spanning 16,000 m2, with capacity for 128 vehicles.

Montepino has led the design of the plans and the execution of the construction work, entrusted to the construction company MLN S.A. and completed within a period of six months. The project has been designed so that, in the future, the space may be extended by an additional 2,000 m2.

Several companies from the pharmaceutical and healthcare sector also have operations on the Alcobendas industrial estate, where this new logistics complex is located. The area is considered a strategic location in which many companies centralise their distribution operations for the rest of the peninsula.

Montepino will include this new asset in the portfolio of the recently created joint venture between the property developer and the manager CBRE Global Investors. Montepino’s objective is to expand and double the current value of its partnership through the completion, during the course of 2018 and 2019, of the more than 300,000 m2 of space currently has under construction, as well as the acquisition of new opportunities.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Slovak Developer J&T Wins Bid for Acquisition of GranCasa and Two Other Shopping Centres

7 August 2018

The Bratislava-based firm has allied itself with Sonae in the acquisition of the Zaragoza complex and others in Bilbao and Santander.

The Slovak real estate firm J&T is preparing for its arrival in Spain with the purchase of three shopping centres, including GranCasa, Zaragoza, in an operation with the Portuguese group Sonae Sierra, estimated at 500 million euros. Sources in the sector confirmed yesterday that J&T, in alliance with Sonae, had outbid the German company ECE for the three complexes and that it will finalise its purchase of the portfolio after completing the corresponding due diligence. The assets also include the Max Center in Bilbao and the Valle Real in Santander.

Sonae, under pressure by its partner in the three centres, CBRE Global Investors, was obligated to sell, though maintaining its intention of continuing to hold a stake. The newspaper Expansión reported yesterday that the Bratislava-based J&T owns 90% of the joint venture created for the purpose with Sonae, while Sonae owns the remaining 10%. Their proposal is said to value the portfolio at approximately 525 million euros, a figure that exceeds ECE’s competing bid. Sonae declined to issue a statement regarding the potential acquisition, limiting itself to saying that “we only discuss finalised transactions.”

The Portuguese group Sonae Sierra took over 50% of GranCasa in 2002, five years after its inauguration, and has been responsible for its management since 2003. The shopping centre located in the Actur, Zaragoza, has more than 200,000 square meters, 80,000 of which are for commercial activity where 170 stores are in operation. There is also a Hipercor, which is not included in the transaction.

GranCasa recently underwent a 12-million-euro investment in a new leisure and restaurant area, which was inaugurated in June. The new space, which measures 10,132 square meters, increased the mall’s offerings to a total of 21 restaurants and five kiosks, complementing existing leisure facilities that include a cinema and gym. The shopping mall’s managers noted that major restaurant chains are or will be maintaining a presence there, including VIPs Smart, Gino’s, The Strad Club, KFC, Muerde la Pasta, Fran Beer and Frutolandia, among others.

Referring to that investment, Alexandre Pessegueiro, head of Asset Management at Sonae Sierra, said GranCasa’s new leisure and restaurant area “is a clear example of how to anticipate changes in consumer models in a sector such as restaurants, in which customers demand an increasing level of differentiation and quality.”

The other two complexes included in the transaction are Max Center, a shopping centre that opened in Bilbao in 1997, and which underwent remodelling in 2000. The shopping mall tenants include Inditex, H&M, Cortefiel, Foster’s Hollywood and La Tagliattela. The centre also has a cinema (Cinesa) and a leisure space next door, Max Ocio.

The third asset is Valle Real, a commercial centre in Santander that opened in 1994 and that in addition to having some of the above brands as tenants, also has a hypermarket of the French chain Carrefour.

The Buyers

J&T Real Estate is a well-regarded Slovak real estate company that has 21 years of experience. The company is headquartered in Bratislava, has 300 employees and a presence in five countries.

Sonae Sierra, which will hold onto 10% of the group, provides services to investors and develops real estate projects anchored in the retail sector. It owns more than 40 shopping centres with a market value of around 7 billion euros and has 83 managed and/or leased shopping centres with 2.5 million square meters of gross leasable area and about 9,300 stores. Sonae currently works with more than 20 co-investors and joint ventures, associating with operators and fund managers for each venture.

Original Story: Heraldo – Luis H. Menéndez

Photo: Guillermo Mestre

Translation: Richard Turner

KF: Inv’t in Offices Amounted to €1.3bn & €0.8bn in Madrid & Barcelona, Respectively, in 2017

13 June 2018 – ABC

The performance of the office sector in Madrid at the end of 2017 bodes well for a “historical” 2018. That is according to all of the investment indicators managed by the real estate experts. Some very positive data for the region, which consolidates the Spanish capital’s position as the most attractive place for companies to locate their headquarters. In fact, it continues to be the greatest magnet for securing capital in the office market with a business volume of €1,324 million – 61% of the aggregated total – compared with €835 million in the Catalan capital. In terms of rented office space, 570,000 m2 was leased in Madrid, compared with 300,000 m2 in Barcelona.

Those are the findings of a recent report about the sector compiled by the consultancy firm Knight Frank, which forecasts greater activity in the sector in Madrid this year due to the rotation of assets by the Socimis and funds to fulfil their business plans. In Madrid, more than 40% of the total investment in 2017 involved funds, which, together with the Socimis outperformed other real estate players during the second half of last year.

The notable differences between the two regional capitals have increased as a result of the effects of the political instability caused by the independence drive and the decrease in tourism that has hit Cataluña. The experts consulted highlight that the rate of company creation has decreased in Cataluña since last summer, whilst in the Community of Madrid, the numbers have increased, with more than 185,000 companies registered with the Social Security at the beginning of 2018.

“The Spanish capital continues to be the key location due to its wide range of opportunities. Net absorption has been increasing for several years and rental prices are still very competitive in comparison with the main European centres”, explains Raúl Vicente, Director of Offices at Knight Frank. Nevertheless, the experts indicate the path that the city should take to become a “super city”. “In terms of the major challenges that it will have to overcome, they include mobility, adaptation to the technological revolution that we are living applied to the service of the city, efficiency, access to housing and an office supply that is commensurate with international demand, amongst others”, highlights the report.

The average price of offices in Madrid’s CBD has been rising in recent years. Prices in the capital now exceed €8,000/m2 on average, whilst in Barcelona, they amount to €6,900/m2. The highest price paid last year was for the former Barclays headquarters in Plaza de Colón, which was purchased from Barclays by CBRE Global Investors for €14,000/m2.

Other notable operations stand out including the purchase of Torre Serrano by Infinorsa and the sale of the Isla Chamartín Business Park to Tristan Capital and Zaphir Asset Management for €103 million. Also, the acquisition of the Palacio de Miraflores on the Carrera de San Jerónimo for €60 million by Remer Investment and of the Los Cubos building by Henderson Park and Therus Invest for €52 million (…).

Original story: ABC (by Adrián Delgado)

Translation: Carmel Drake

CBRE GI Invests €10M in Star Project in Plaza de Colón (Madrid)

21 June 2018 – Eje Prime

CBRE Global Investors (CBRE GI) is increasing its commitment to Spain with its latest project. The investment arm of the CBRE group is going to invest €10 million in the project to renovate the building at number 1 Plaza de Colón and, to this end, the multinational firm has engaged one of the most sought-after architects in the world, Norman Foster. The new property, which is going to be constructed on the site of the former Barclays headquarters, will become the star of CBRE GI’s growth plan in Spain.

The asset manager acquired the former Barclays headquarters in 2017. In November of the previous year, the financial institution started to sound out the possibility of selling the building on Plaza de Colón (at the intersection of Paseo de la Castellana and Paseo de Recoletos) to move to another location and, three months later, in January, it sealed the deal.

Three years after the acquisition, CBRE GI is preparing to transform the building, a project that has formed part of its plans since it completed the operation. The former Barclays headquarters is now beginning a renovation that will convert it into Axis, where offices and a commercial area are going to be opened on the four floors that will comprise the new asset.

This project forms part of an investment plan that will amount to €800 million. The company has almost one hundred properties in its portfolio, spread across the retail, office, logistics and hall of residence markets.

Nevertheless, in May, the company announced that it is going to enter the residential sector in 2018. The consultancy firm’s investment fund wants to access that segment through the rental market (…).

The company’s objective for this year is to repeat or even exceed the investment figure recorded last year. In 2017, the manager closed transactions amounting to €1.3 billion.

In addition, CBRE GI, which works with eight investment funds in Spain, manages a portfolio of assets worth €3.2 billion (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by J. Izquierdo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Blackstone Offers €90M+ for Lar España’s Logistics Portfolio

14 June 2018 – Eje Prime

Blackstone is expanding its appetite for Spanish real estate. The US fund, which is in the middle of a takeover bid for Hispania’s hotels, is now attacking the industrial real estate market and is finalising the purchase of Lar’s logistics portfolio. The firm could pay more than €90 million for the six assets owned by the listed Socimi.

Lar’s portfolio, which includes one plot of land, a precious commodity in the sector’s current climate, is worth €92 million, according to the most recent appraisal, performed at the end of 2017. The capital appreciation that the Socimi has managed to generate amounts to 40%, according to Expansión.

The operation, in which Blackstone has emerged as the only finalist and which, therefore, is holding exclusive negotiations with the Spanish group, forms part of Lar España’s new strategic plan to divest its position in the logistics market. It is the intention of both parties to sign the sale and purchase contract before the summer.

Lar’s six assets span a combined gross leasable area (GLA) of 169,800 m2 and, since they came onto the market, have attracted interest from large investment funds and international logistics operators. The list of potential suitors has included, in addition to Blackstone, CBRE Global Investors, P3 and Ares Management.

Through this purchase, the US fund is seeking to strengthen its logistics portfolio in Spain. In January, the company paid €90 million for four complexes leased to the supermarket chain Dia. In 2017, the sector set a new historical record with total investment in Spain of €1.5 billion, up by 85% compared to the previous year, according to data from the consultancy firm Savills Aguirre Newman.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake