Andalucía’s Culture Department Approves ‘La Equitativa’ Hotel Project in Málaga

18 January 2019 – Málaga Hoy

The majority owner of the La Equitativa building, which is behind the partial restoration of the property for the installation of a 5-star hotel, now has the path clear to obtain the building permit for the work. The Delegation of Culture of the Junta de Andalucía has just issued a favourable report for the renovation project, plans for which were submitted almost eight months ago, which paves the way for the Urban Planning Department to grant permission for the intervention.

That was confirmed to this newspaper by sources close to the owner company, who indicated that it was the last procedure that was pending with the municipal entity. In terms of the timeframes that the company is working with to launch the work, the same sources said that it will depend on the announcements made by the municipal entity, which will have to validate compliance with the other technical requirements before proceeding to grant the permit.

The unblocking of the hotel project came on 22 June, when Key International, an investment fund headquartered in Miami, acquired 100% of the east part of the building, which comprises a ground floor plus seven upper storeys, through the firm Alameda Retail. The sale and purchase operation also involved one home and a commercial premise, and although they barely account for 3% of this section of La Equitativa, they were limiting the possibility of the project going ahead as a hotel.

That circumstance forced the private firm to not rule out the possibility of opting for residential use for that part of the building. Having closed the purchase of the remaining buildings, an operation that required several weeks of negotiations with the tenants, the investment fund has free reign to push ahead with its first objective: hotel use. It was precisely that purpose that sparked the firm’s interest in buying La Equitativa in the first place, closing the purchase of 60% of the historical building, which had been owned by Rubcapel until that time.

At the end of April, through the company Key Continental, a request was filed with the Urban Planning Department to proceed with the renovation of the property for that purpose. The data points to an establishment with capacity for around 80 rooms, with an investment of around €14 million. In addition, there will be commercial premises on the ground floors.

Once the position of Delegation of Culture, which is in favour of the intervention, has been defined, then the company may soon resume contact with hotel chains to close an agreement for the management of the establishment.

The other part of La Equitativa corresponds to the tower, comprising 14 floors, which will also be renovated but which will retain its residential use. For that, the owner, Ingomar, also requested a building permit from the Urban Planning Department last October.

The restoration of this building, which is still in the processing phase, is part of a major transformation process currently on-going in La Alameda area, with the future arrival of the metro and the semi-pedestrianisation work, promoted by the Town Hall, as some of the main features.

Original story: Málaga Hoy (by Sebastián Sánchez)

Translation: Carmel Drake

General de Galerías Comerciales Buys Land in Málaga for €11.5M

9 January 2018 – Eje Prime

General de Galerías Comerciales is fattening up its portfolio. The Socimi led by the Murcian businessman Tomás Olivo has acquired several plots in the Malagan municipality of Rincón de la Victoria worth €11.5 million, according to a statement filed by the company with the Alternative Investment Market (MAB).

This purchase, financed using own funds, comes just a month after the company completed the acquisition of El Mirador de Jinámar, the largest retail area in the Canary Islands. That transaction involved a disbursement of €45 million and was advised by Cushman & Wakefield.

General de Galerías Comerciales debuted on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) in July 2017. The company has twenty years of experience and undertakes activity across the whole value chain from the purchase of land to the management of developments.

The main assets in its portfolio are retail parks and shopping centres in Spain, such as La Cañada (Málaga), Mediterráneo (Almería), Mataró Parc (Barcelona), Gran Plaza (Almería), Las Dunas and Nevada Shopping (Granada).

The company also has a large portfolio of residential assets and commercial premises, as well as land, primarily in the south of Spain. When it made its debut on the stock market, the company’s asset portfolio was worth €1.906 billion.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Blackstone Launches its 6th Socimi in Spain with 1,600+ Rental Homes

27 December 2018 – El Diario

Blackstone is increasing its position as the largest landlord in Spain. On Thursday, the vulture fund received approval to list its sixth Socimi, Euripo, on the stock market, which will make its debut with an initial value of €110 million. On its balance sheet, another 1,600 homes that will join the more than 20,000 properties that the fund already owns.

Euripo will make its debut on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB), the secondary market in Spain, where it will join other Socimis owned by the US fund, including Fidere, Albirana, Corona and Torbel. Blackstone also recently took control of 80% of Testa, the largest rental home company in Spain, ownership of which it shares with Banco Santander.

In this way, almost one in ten Socimis in Spain have Blackstone as a majority shareholder. As is usual in the operation of this fund, Euripo is owned by a company belonging to Blackstone that is based in Luxembourg.

In this case, Blackstone is listing a portfolio comprising more than 2,000 real estate assets including homes, garages and commercial premises proceeding from the divestment of two financial entities, BBVA and the now extinct Banco Popular. Of the total portfolio, it has direct ownership of 1,900 assets, whilst another 400 are in the hands of a related company, which will likely end up on Euripo’s balance sheet, according to comments included in the IPO document.

There are currently more than 60 Socimis listed in Spain on the MAB, the main stock market and the Ibex 35. Blackstone has been the most active investment fund, especially in the rental home segment, where it controls almost a quarter of the companies currently listed.

The set of assets that Blackstone is debuting on the stock market with this new Socimi is worth around €215 million, of which half are located in Madrid and Barcelona. The remainder are distributed across 35 Spanish provinces, according to the aforementioned IPO document.

Currently, less than 30% of the properties of this company are occupied. For this reason, the company expects to increase its revenues by improving the occupancy ratios and by increasing the rents charged for each occupied home by between 4% and 5%. Moreover, it says that 7% of its assets are illegally occupied.

Original story: El Diario (by Diego Larrouy)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Corpfin Sells 5 Commercial Premises in San Sebastián & Valencia for €32.2M

18 December 2018 – Eje Prime

Corpfin is continuing with its divestments. The real estate group has sold four assets in San Sebastián, and a fifth in the centre of Valencia for a total amount of €32.2 million, according to a statement filed by the company with the Alternative Investment Market (MAB).

In the capital of Gipuzkoa, the company has divested the ground floor premises at numbers 9 and 11 Calle Guetaria, located next to the store that it sold two weeks ago for €7 million, as well as the two assets that comprise the ground floor premises at number 13 Calle San Marcial.

The sold portfolio, which has been transferred through the listed Socimis Corpfin Capital Prime Retail II and III, which held 40% and 60% of the shares, also includes the commercial premise located at number 19 Plaza de la Reina in Valencia. This divestment is the third that the vehicle has undertaken in recent months, following the sale of Gran Vía 55 in Madrid in September.

Moreover, and through Inbest, Corpfin Real Estate has disbursed €250 million during the last quarter, investing in two major operations in Madrid and Valencia. The first was the agreement reached with Riu to acquire the commercial space in Edificio España for €160 million. That deal was followed by the purchase from El Corte Inglés of a building in the centre of Valencia for €90 million.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Caser Buys an Office Building in Central Madrid

14 December 2018 – Eje Prime

Caser has acquired a prime asset in Madrid. The Spanish insurance company has purchased a building on Calle Velázquez measuring 5,460 m2. The property, which is occupied in its entirety, is home to commercial premises and offices, according to a statement issued by the company.

The property is located at number 94 of the central street in the Spanish capital and its surface area is distributed over the semi-basement floor, the mezzanine floor and six upper floors. The amount of the operation has not been disclosed and the deal has been advised by the consultancy firm Savills Aguirre Newman.

The building, which dates back to 1920, is being incorporated into Caser’s real estate portfolio, which comprises assets located in Madrid as well as in other cities around the country. Of the properties in the Spanish capital, the firm’s headquarters in Las Tablas stand out, as do the assets distributed in strategic locations such as Calle Alcalá, Plaza de la Lealtad and Julián Camarillo, where Eurovision has just leased offices, as revealed today in Eje Prime.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Barcino Purchases a Property in Barcelona for €2.4M

4 December 2018 – Eje Prime

Barcino is going shopping in the Catalan capital. The Socimi, which made its debut on the stock market in December, has acquired an asset comprising nine homes and one office, located at number 105 Calle Hospital in Barcelona. The operation has been closed for almost €2.4 million, according to a statement filed by the company with the Alternative Investment Market (MAB).

The company has financed the purchase using funds obtained from the capital increase that it carried out in September, amounting to €9.7 million. In addition, the occupancy rate of the asset amounts to 89%, according to a statement filed by the group with the stock market regulator.

Barcino is in the process of growing its residential portfolio. Its most recent acquisition was at the beginning of October when it purchased a property in the Catalan capital for €2.8 million. In May, the company invested €2 million in the purchase of around twenty assets, also in Barcelona, the city where it centres all of its operations. Most of its buildings are rental homes, but it also owns offices buildings and commercial premises, located throughout the metropolitan area of the Catalan capital.

Before the end of 2017, the Socimi disbursed €1.6 million to acquire a residential building on Calle Girona. The company’s Board of Directors comprises Mateu Turró, in the role of President, and Francesc Ventura and Ralph Weichelt, as directors. Barcino was valued at €19.1 million when it made its debut on the MAB.

Specialising in real estate investment and management, the Socimi is controlled (50.01%) by Barcino Management and managed by a company linked to the firm Vistalegre Property Management.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Corestate Acquires 24 Commercial Properties for €212M

9 November 2018 – Eje Prime

Corestate has acquired a portfolio of retail assets. The Luxembourg-based fund manager has purchased 24 commercial properties, located in 17 German cities, for €212 million. The properties comprise a total surface area of 100,000 m2.

The tenants of these assets include retailers such as New Yorker, Rewe, Müller and Dm. With this operation, Corestate is fulfilling its latest investment program launched in April, through which it plans to invest €250 million in total, according to reports from Property EU.

“Our investors are still convinced by the success of retail assets in the pedestrianized areas of medium-sized and prosperous German cities”, said Thomas Landschreiber, co-founder of Corestate. “We will continue with this focus and we will also diversify our range of products in the retail sector with more investment programs”, he added.

Corestate arrived in Spain in 2015 hand in hand with the Villar Mir Group, but it has a long history in markets such as Germany, where it owns 6,000 beds in student halls of residence. The company’s investments include retail assets (with premises on the high streets of medium-sized German cities), offices, residential and micro-flats.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Vitruvio Submits €32M Bid to Acquire Única Real Estate

8 November 2018 – Eje Prime

Vitruvio is planning to grow from inside the Alternative Investment Market (MAB). The Socimi chaired by Joaquín López-Chicheri has submitted an offer amounting to €31.96 million for Única Real Estate, the manager that is also listed on the same exchange, according to a statement filed by the company with the MAB.

The bid covers 100% of Única’s share capital, for which the Socimi has established a payment of approximately €27.14 per share, on the basis of the number of shares in circulation to date and the valuation that Vitruvio has determined for the company.

The team led by López-Chicheri has agreed that the payment may be made both in cash as well as by exchanging shares in Vitruvio. Each shareholder that participates will have to accept a share exchange as the payment form for at least 25% of the shares that they sell and a maximum of 75% in cash, explained the company.

Moreover, the Socimi is offering Única the possibility of postponing the appointment of a representative to its Board. After learning about the interest of the listed company in purchasing it, the operation must be approved at the General Shareholders’ Meeting by 51% of Vitruvio’s shareholders, once the favourable reports have been received from an independent expert designated by the Mercantile Registry and following the legal, technical and financial review.

Vitruvio: profits up by 22% to June to €580,000  

The Socimi, specialising in the management of office buildings, homes and commercial premises, recorded a profit of €578,459 during the first half of 2018, up by 21.8% compared to the same period in 2017.

Supported by its 288 investors, of which only one owns more than 5% of the company, Vitruvio owns around thirty real estate assets located all over Spain. Nevertheless, the Socimi has a clear focus on Madrid, given that the Spanish capital accounts for 79% of its portfolio. The other assets are located in Bizkaia (10%), Barcelona (4%) and a number of other cities ranging from Palencia to Salamanca, and including Ourense, Badajoz and Zamora.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Socimi Vitruvio to Sale its Industrial Assets worth €12.8M

2 November 2018 – La Información

The Socimi Vitruvio, which focuses on the residential market, wants to take a new step on its journey and get rid of its industrial assets. In this way, the Socimi, which has Joaquín López-Chicheri as its CEO, will focus on the residential sector, above all, although without neglecting its commercial assets or offices. On the other hand, it will dispose of the least glamorous part of its real estate portfolio, its logistics warehouses.

This part of its business, worth €12.8 million, according to the company’s own accounts, generates a return of 9.3% – the highest of any of its divisions – and has an occupancy rate of 100%. Despite that, the company’s plans involve forgetting about these types of assets, which they consider to be “residual” and “non-strategic”.

“We have always thought that residential is the safest type of asset”, say sources at the company. On the other hand, they recognise that diversification is due, in large part, to the need to generate higher profits to access dividend payments to shareholders. “Residential has the capacity to generate a lower recurring return, unless you assume one more level of risk”, said the CEO of the firm.

Where are this Socimi’s industrial assets located? The firm led by López-Chicheri owns properties of an industrial nature in Mercamadrid and Yunquera de Henares, a town close to Guadalajara.

The first of them, located in the aforementioned distribution platform, has a market value of €2.82 million, which represents a price of €526/m2. The second, on an industrial estate in the town of Yunquera de Henares, Guadalajara has a market value of €5.2 million. That asset has a surface area of 13,587 m2 and a price of €381/m2.

The Socimi that now wants to divest the logistics component of its assets has a “patrimonialist” vision, according to its CEO. In this way, the firm has diversified its assets to reduce risks. “The portfolios that traditional patrimonialist firms have are normally distributed between residential, well-located commercial premises and offices. And that is what Vitruvio has”, said the executive.

This real estate investment company was constituted in June 2014, under the Socimi tax regime. Since then, it has undergone several capital increases – raising almost €30 million in total – to acquire assets and position itself ahead of its stock market debut.

The bell was rung in July 2016, two years after its creation, at a price of €12.63 per share and with 126 shareholders. Nowadays, Vitruvio’s shares are listed on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) through the fixing system – with two daily auctions – at a price of €13.70 per share.

In January of that same year, the company carried out its largest capital increase to date raising €11.5 million. Thanks to that, the number of assets increased along with their value to exceed €100 million.

Original story: La Información (by Lucía Gómez)

Translation: Carmel Drake

VBare’s Revenues & EBIT Rise by 28% & 46%, Respectively, in the 9 Month to September

2 November 2018 – Eje Prime

VBare Iberian Properties saw its net result for the first nine months of the year decrease YoY. The Socimi recorded a profit of €1.84 million to September, down by 15.6% compared to the same period in 2017, according to a statement filed by the company with the Alternative Investment Market (MAB).

Similarly, the company recorded gross revenues from rental income of €1 million between January and September, exceeding the turnover obtained during the same period last year by 28%. Meanwhile, its EBIT was 46% higher at €611,000.

Currently, VBare’s portfolio has an appraisal value of €35.1 million. So far this year, the company has acquired 37 homes and two commercial premises in the towns of Móstoles, Málaga and Madrid for €3.7 million. The Socimi also undertook a capital increase in June amounting to €3.2 million.

At the beginning of October, the company also completed its largest investment to date in a single asset. That involved the purchase, for €10.5 million, of a residential property located in Madrid. The building purchase, which has a surface area of 3,285 m2, was financed by the company through a mortgage loan amounting to €5.25 million and own funds.

VBare is a real estate investment vehicle specialising in the acquisition and management of residential assets for their rental. The company was constituted in March 2015 with the aim of generating high returns for its shareholders through the implementation of a value-added strategy and benefitting from the existing opportunities in the Spanish residential market.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake