Villar Mir Group Puts Inmobiliaria Espacio Up For Sale

18 September 2019 – El Confidencial

According to financial sources, the Villar Mir Group has put its land and property developer subsidiary Inmobiliaria Espacio up for sale. The objective is to raise funds to repay the group’s creditor, the Monaco-based fund Tyrus Capital, and it follows the divestment of two other non-real estate entities, Fertiberia and Ferratlántica, in August.

Savills Aguirre Newman has been engaged to coordinate the sale after valuing the entity’s land and plots at €256.88 million as at 31 December 2017. The assets may be sold as a set or piecemeal. Moreover, the company has tax credits worth between €100 million and €200 million, which is where the real value of Inmobiliaria Espacio lies.

According to the latest available data, the company reported an EBITDA of €1.61 million in 2017 and sales of €46.77 million, up by 23.2% YoY. Moreover, it has an excellent and sizeable portfolio of land for development in good locations, for which planning permission has been granted, and therefore an improvement in sales is forecast over the next few years.

Last year, Tyrus Capital lent the Villar Mir Group €360 million to refinance the debt that the traditional banks did not want to extend. The conditions of that loan are onerous – it has a two-year term (of which one year has already passed) and it carries an interest rate of between 10% and 12%. As such, the group wants to sell off its assets in an orderly fashion to repay and reduce its financing, and so time is of the essence.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Agustín Marco)

Translated by: Aura Ree

El Corte Inglés Doubles its Assets for Sale to €3bn & Invites Preliminary Offers by End of March

11 March 2019 – El Confidencial

El Corte Inglés has set a deadline of the end of March for interested parties to submit their preliminary bids for its real estate assets. Moreover, it has increased the perimeter of the portfolio from the initial value of between €1.5 billion and €2 billion to €3 billion.

ECI engaged PwC at the end of 2018 to help it define the perimeter, which comprises non-strategic assets, primarily land, offices, logistics platforms and stores.

The portfolio can be divided into three batches, based on on the liquidity of the assets: assets in good locations and with the possibility of being sold quickly (liquid) account for around one third of the perimeter; intermediate assets represent around 15% of the total; and just over half of the portfolio comprises assets that are not very liquid or that are located in complicated areas.

The aim of the sale is to use the funds raised to reduce the distribution group’s debt, which amounted to €3.8 billion at the end of 2017, equivalent to around four times its EBITDA of c. €1 billion.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Jorge Zuloaga & Ruth Ugalde)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Habitat’s Land Portfolio Now Spans 1 million m2 with Capacity to Build 10,000 Homes

9 March 2019 – Expansión

The property developer Habitat now owns more than 1 million m2 of land after investing €121 million last year to expand its portfolio. As such, the firm led by José Carlos Saz (pictured below) has the capacity to build around 10,000 homes. Specifically, the firm backed by Bain Capital acquired 27 plots last year on which to build around 2,500 homes. 5% of those plots were non-buildable (in the process of being approved for construction).

The company expects to reach cruising speed with the delivery of 2,000 homes per year from 2021 onwards. Last year, it handed over 270 homes across 4 developments in Barcelona, Málaga and Madrid, to generate turnover of €89 million, EBITDA of €1.83 million and a net profit of €250,000. The company plans to invest €500 million in land purchases until 2021, financed by Bain.

Moreover, like its competitors Neinor, Aedas and Metrovacesa, Habitat is also considering entering the rental home sector and may even begin to build developments for Socimis.

Original story: Expansión (by Rebeca Arroyo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Quabit’s Revenues Soared in 2018, but its Profits Fell by 53%

28 February 2019 – Eje Prime

Quabit’s revenues soared but its profits decreased. The real estate company closed 2018 with a net profit of €6.7 million, down by 53% compared to the previous year, when it reached €14.3 million. The company attributes that reduction to the “activation of tax credits in 2017, amounting to €26 million”, according to reports in a relevant fact submitted to Spain’s National Securities and Exchange Commission (CNMV).

The firm’s EBITDA also deteriorated, with losses of €25.3 million, a figure that quadruples the loss recorded a year earlier when it amounted to €7.3 million. “The negative impact in terms of EBITDA is due to the extraordinary effect of the valuation corrections on the land and the lower discounts on the debt”, said the company in a statement about its results.

In terms of revenues, they soared last year to reach €39.6 million, whereby multiplying the figure from the previous year (€5.7 million) eight-fold. At the end of the year, the gross value of its assets amounted to €506 million, 27% higher than at the end of the previous year. That growth was attributable to the company’s new investments and the revaluation of its portfolio.

In terms of its portfolio, Quabit handed over 190 homes in 2018 and also invested in its land bank, increasing it by around €180 million since 2017. It currently has around 4,000 homes in different phases of development and is working on the launch of new projects included in its business plan for 2018-2022.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Meliá Earned 13% More in 2018 but its Revenues Fell by 1.5%

1 March 2019 – Expansión

Meliá ended the year with a slight decrease in revenues (1.5%) to €1.83 billion, which it blamed on a deceleration in the tourism sector. Nevertheless, its net profits rose by 13% to €140 million.

The decrease in revenues was due above all to the impact of the devaluation of the US dollar in the America region during the first quarter of the year – one of the most important for the company in the region – and the closure of several hotels for renovation in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. There was also a slow down in the Mediterranean and Cuba.

Despite the slow down in turnover, the company’s EBITDA increased by 7% to €326 million, following the sale of three hotels to the Socimi Atom in the summer and due to an appreciation in the value of its assets. Excluding those gains, Meliá’s EBITDA in the period increased by 0.9% to €307 million (…).

Looking ahead to 2019, Meliá is cautious regarding the evolution of the markets in America and the Canary Islands, but, by contrast, is optimistic about the markets in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), where it expects RevPAR growth of low to average digits, primarily due to the strong outlook in Continental Europe, as well as in Spain. Specifically, it forecasts a recovery in Barcelona, Madrid and Sevilla.

Original story: Expansión (by R.A)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Lar España’s Profits Fell by 4.6% in 2018 to €129.3M

1 March 2019 – Expansión

Lar España recorded a net profit of €129.3 million in 2018, which represented a decrease of 4.6% with respect to the previous year, whilst its revenues grew by 0.3% to €77.8 million.

According to explanations provided by the company, this result includes a charge of €17.9 million in the first quarter, to comply with the Grupo Lar management contract, as it achieved divestments of €100 million.

Without that negative effect, which is only going to be recorded in 2018 (…), the resulted would have amounted to €155.7 million, 7% more than in the previous year. Meanwhile, the EBITDA amounted to €55 million, up by 0.3%.

The firm completed divestments amounting to €272.5 million in 2018 and invested €75.6 million in the renovation of its asset portfolio.

In terms of dividends, the sale of the luxury homes at Lagasca 99 (Madrid) will allow the company to increase its remuneration to shareholders from €0.49 in 2017 to €0.80 in 2018, a rise of 63.2%.

At the end of 2018, the firm’s financial debt amounted to €621.7 million. Last year, its assets appreciated in value by 12.1% (…).

Original story: Expansión

Translation: Carmel Drake

El Corte Inglés Considers Creating a Socimi to List its Real Estate Assets on the Stock Market

15 February 2019 – Modaes.es

El Corte Inglés is looking for solutions for its portfolio of real estate assets. The Qatari sheikh Hamad Al Thani, the third largest shareholder in the Madrilenian department store group, has proposed the creation of a Socimi to manage the rental of its assets.

The plan proposed by Al Thani, who entered the company’s share capital last summer, involves creating a company in which El Corte Inglés would own a 51% stake. The remaining 49% of the shares would be listed on the stock market.

The Qatari investor already proposed this solution to the previous President of the group, Dimas Gimeno, but it was not successful then, according to El Economista. For the time being, the Board of Directors of El Corte Inglés has not received a formal petition regarding the plan.

The real estate portfolio of El Corte Inglés is worth €17.1 billion, according to a report from Tinsa. The department stores and hypermarkets are worth €15.0 billion, whilst the warehouses, offices and mixed-use buildings are worth €1.1 billion. Finally, the high street establishments are valued at €1 billion.

It is estimated that, in the event that the operation proposed by the sheikh goes ahead, the valuation of the assets could amount to half their current value, around €8.2 billion, according to Tinsa.

In parallel, the group is continuing to work on the sale of 130 real estate assets worth €2 billion in conjunction with the consultancy firm PwC. The property that El Corte Inglés wants to divest now comprises land, offices and buildings defined as non-strategic. Those assets also include some logistics centres.

The objective of these divestments is to reduce the group’s debt so that it can obtain a level of solvency that will allow it to raise financing in the capital markets at a lower price. In this sense, Núñez de la Rosa, the President of the group, has committed to reducing the group’s liabilities by €1 billion in twelve months.

Currently, the real estate portfolio of El Corte Inglés comprises 94 shopping centres, which account for 87% of the total value of the company’s assets. Two of those properties are valued at more than €500 million each, and another two are worth between €400 million and €500 million each.

The department store group recorded EBITDA of €335 million during the first half of 2018, up by 4.4% YoY. Between January and August, the company recorded turnover of €7.6 billion, up by 0.4% YoY.

Original story: Modaes.es

Translation: Carmel Drake

Vitruvio to Complete a €14.5M Capital Increase Ahead of its Takeover of Única

5 February 2019 – Eje Prime

Vitruvio is preparing to launch its takeover bid for Única. The Socimi is planning to complete a €14.5 million capital increase to finance the operation, which will be complemented by the exchange of shares plus available cash from the company.

In addition, the company has now completed the two due diligence processes on the Madrilenian Socimi – specifically, the technical and legal due diligences, and both of them have proved positive. “That was the last step that needed to be completed before submitting the offer to the reference shareholders of Única, which is extendable to all of the shareholders”, explained sources at Vitruvio speaking to Eje Prime.

Vitruvio is planning to close the operation for around €32 million. After adding €45 million in properties from Única, the group will be managing a portfolio of rental assets worth €160 million.

According to explanations provided by the Socimi in a statement sent to the Alternative Investment Market (MAB), the capital increase will finance part of the acquisition, fulfil the maximum indebtedness limit of 33% and make way for the entry of new investors.

The rest of the operation will be paid for with €8.1 million of available cash as well as financing available to Vitruvio for the purchase, and another €9.7 million, which will be paid for with shares representing 30% of Única.

The capital increase will be proposed at the next shareholders meeting in March at a price of €14.50 per share. “Vitruvio will propose the capital increase at the latest NAV per share, whereby avoiding any dilution of the shareholders”, explained the company.

Única Real Estate was founded in 2015 by the former CEO of Metrovacesa, Eduardo Paraja, and specialises in the acquisition and leasing of commercial premises in the Community of Madrid.

Vitruvio, meanwhile, has a diversified portfolio comprising offices, homes and commercial premises. Together, the two companies own 71 properties, and generate revenues and EBITDA of €9.3 million and €6.3 million, respectively.

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

Translation: Carmel Drake

Saba Buys 800 Parking Lots from Indigo for €200M

12 December 2018 – Eje Prime

Saba is expanding in Europe. The subsidiary of CriteriaCaixa, which specialises in the acquisition and management of parking lots, has acquired 800 car parks from Indigo for €200 million. The package sold comprises 169,000 parking spaces spread over several countries across the continent, including the United Kingdom and Germany.

In addition to British and German territory, Saba has also entered Slovakia and the Czech Republic with this purchase. Those four countries join the five where the company already had a presence, namely: Spain, Italy, Portugal, Andorra and Chile. In total, the company managed 210,000 parking spaces to date.

By virtue of this operation with Indigo, which is owned by the investment fund Ardian, the Spanish company has almost doubled the size of its portfolio, which will increase to 378,000 parking spaces, distributed across 1,175 parking lots, according to Expansión.

Salvador Alemany, President of Saba, has said that the purchase of this package of alternative assets “consolidates Saba’s industrial project over the long term, giving coherence to the roadmap marked by the company with the aim of making it a first-rate international player”.

In 2017, Saba recorded revenues of €213 million, with an EBITDA of €100 million and net financial debt of €330 million.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Haya Reactivates its IPO After Protecting its Mega-Contract with Sareb

8 November 2018 – Cinco Días

One of the IPOs scheduled for this year is going to be executed next year, most likely in the window that will launch in May. The bane that was weighing down on Haya Real Estate, the end of its mega-contract with Sareb, has almost been lifted. The contract was signed in January 2015 and expires in December 2019, but financial sources are now certain that it is going to be renewed. Nevertheless, Sareb is likely to pay lower commissions to the real estate asset manager (servicer, in the jargon). The appraisal value of the firm ahead of its stock market debut amounts to around €1.2 billion.

Last May, Sareb put assets worth around €23.5 billion up for sale, comprising property developer loans and real estate assets. They accounted for 60.6% of the €38.8 billion that Haya had at the end of June.

That caused investors to panic about their bonds, whose yield soared to 8.5% (refer to the graph) and put in doubt Haya’s stock market debut this year, as Cinco Días published on 4 June. Now, the yield on that debt amounts to less than 7%. Haya has engaged Rothschild as its chief IPO advisor and Citi and JP Morgan as the coordinators.

But last summer, the so-called bad bank decided to suspend that operation and opt, in all cases, for smaller sales. Thus, the firm controlled by Cerberus was going to manage those assets until the end of the year. The sources consulted indicate that, after the divestment was ruled out, the negotiations between Sareb and Haya progressed at a good pace and the likelihood of the contract being extended now exceeds 90%. Barring a last-minute change of heart, the two entities will announce the extension of the agreement before 30 June 2019. Nevertheless, a spokesperson for Sareb clarified that a decision has not yet been taken. A spokesperson for Haya declined to comment on the information.

The final discussion points relate to the commission that Sareb is going to have to pay Haya. By contrast, the servicer is not going to pay any upfront payments, like it did in at the start of the current contract, for €235 million.

The other question that must be resolved in parallel to the stock market debut is that of a possible merger. Sabadell has put its asset manager, Solvia, up for sale for around €400 million, and Cerberus (Haya’s main shareholder) is the main interested party. In fact, Cerberus has already acquired 80% of Sabadell’s real estate assets with a book value of €9.1 billion. Santander and Apollo are also in the process of selling Altamira, and Haya is exploring possible business opportunities outside of Spain.

In addition to Sareb’s assets, Haya Real Estate is also likely to manage the majority of the assets that BBVA has sold to Cerberus for around €4 billion (with a book value of around €13 billion). It has also already been agreed that Haya Real Estate will manage the future flows of toxic property from BBBA. Haya will also add the so-called Ágora portfolio to its assets, comprising €650 million purchased by Cerberus from CaixaBank.

Until the amount of assets managed is increased, it already has a Bankia portfolio amounting to €5.5 billion under management, thanks to a contract signed in May, as well as portfolios from Cajamar (€5.9 billion), Liberbank (€2.9 billion) and other firms (€1 billion). Between January and June, Haya recorded revenues of €130.2 million, of which €64.9 million was converted into EBITDA. On Thursday 15 November, the firm will publish its accounts to the end of September.

Original story: Cinco Días 

Translation: Carmel Drake