Habitat Acquires Plot of Land in Badalona from Emesa for €5 Million

4 September 2019

Emesa, a real estate firm owned by the Barcelona-based attorney Emilio Cuatrecasas, sold a plot of land in Badalona (Barcelona) to the real estate developer Habitat for about five million euros.

The deal will add a total of 2,300 m2 of surface area and 3,000 m2 of buildable area in the neighbourhood of El Gorg, in Badalona, to Habitat’s portfolio. The company is planning to build forty homes on the land, investing more than thirteen million euros.

The acquisition is part of the company’s strategic plan, where it is currently undertaking more than 43 developments with a total of 3,800 homes.

Original Story: Idealista – Custodio Pareja

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner


WeWork Leases 2 New Office Spaces in Barcelona

4 October 2018 – Eje Prime

The US group, WeWork, is continuing its conquest of Spain and is getting ready to make its mark in the centre of Barcelona. The company, which specialises in flexible office spaces, will add a new complex to its portfolio in the Catalan capital after signing the lease on a building. The Corner, located at number 444 Avenida Diagonal, owned by Emesa. In parallel, the group is finalising the lease of the former headquarters of Banco Popular on Paseo de Gracia, in a property controlled Hines.

The building on La Diagonal is owned by Emesa, the investor group owned by Emilio Cuatrecasas, and used to house the headquarters of the law firm Cuatrecasas. The Corner, located at the intersection of La Diagonal and Paseo de Gracia has a surface area of 3,400 m2 distributed over seven floors (plus a basement), with an average surface area of 400 m2 each.

Emesa has owned the property on La Diagonal since 2017, when it paid €35 million to acquire it. The asset had been on the market since the beginning of the year after Cuatrecasas abandoned its traditional location to move to the 22@ district. Emesa had considered the possibility of leasing the building to several tenants, but in the end, it will be occupied in its entirety by WeWork.

In the meantime, the coworking giant is finalising another major operation. The company is close to signing the lease on the former headquarters of Banco Popular on Paseo de Gracia, a building that has been owned by Hines since March 2017, which paid €90 million for it.

Spaces, one of WeWork’s main rivals, expressed interest in that building in July. Nevertheless, sources at the company indicate that its operation never materialised. The building, located at number 17 Paseo de Gracia, has a surface area for offices and a retail premise, and has just been renovated by its owner.

With these moves, the US giant is taking positions in the centre of Barcelona; until now it had focused its presence on the 22@ district. In May, WeWork leased 4,500 m2 of space in the WIP building, owned by the Swiss fund Stoneweg.

That building is located next to the first complex that the group opened in Spain, in the Luxa building on Calle Tánger of the technological district. In Madrid, WeWork operates a space at number 43 Paseo de la Castellana, another at 77 on the same street, and a third at number 27 Calle Eloy Gonzalo.

Companies specialising in the management of these types of work spaces are revolutionising the office market all over the world. WeWork and Spaces are just two of the largest players on the global stage and both arrived in Spain in 2017.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Pilar Riaño & Jabier Izquierdo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Emesa Segregates its Activity & Creates a Dedicated Real Estate Company

14 May 2018 – Eje Prime

Emesa is showing that it’s serious about its real estate business. The investor group owned by Emilio Cuatrecasas is immersed in a company reorganisation, which will lead him to segregate his business into two: one division will be destined to corporate investment and the other to real estate investment. The group has recently created the first company to this end, Emesa Real Estate, which will have Emesa Corporación Empresarial as its sole shareholder and Ferrán Forrellad as the administrator.

According to the Official Bulletin of the Mercantile Registry, the constitution of Emesa Real Estate is the first step being taken by the group to initiate its corporate restructuring. Although the company already operated its real estate business through the holding company Emesa Corporación Empresarial, from now on, it will channel all of its operations in the real estate sector through one specific company.

Meanwhile, the other arm of Emesa’s business, Emesa Capital, will be managed by Vanessa Llopar, who has served as the CEO of that division since March. Through that subsidiary, Emesa is investing in companies in various sectors, from healthcare companies, such as Devicare, to companies specialising in urban storage, such as Boxinfiniti.

Thus, Emesa’s new plans in the Spanish real estate sector will be conducted directly by this new division. The group is going to invest more than €100 million in Barcelona and its surrounding area, as revealed by Eje Prime, in order to launch new residential projects, office buildings and hotels.

Even so, the company’s involvement in the real estate sector dates back years. Emesa first leapt into the property development world with a building in the heart of Barcelona’s 22@ district, which is now the headquarters of the law firm Cuatrecasas in the Catalan capital.

The group, which has increased its workforce by threefold over the last three years, from seven employees to twenty-one, is now in the preliminary phase of constructing a new office building in the same area, at number 184 Calle Pallars. Designed by the architecture studio BAAS, Emesa is going to invest €25 million in that new asset, which will have an above ground surface area of 9,200 m2 and 5,000 m2 of space below ground level.

Moreover, in recent months, Emesa has starred in several high-profile operations in the Barcelona real estate market, such as the purchase of the Diagonal 444 building, the former headquarters of Cuatrecasas; and of the Diagonal 632 building, which is the headquarters of the Quirónsalud’s Ophthalmological Institute in Barcelona.

And from one side of Avenida Diagonal to the other. As Eje Prime revealed, Emesa acquired 37,000 m2 in Finestrellas, an up and coming area, which will include offices, residential properties and a commercial area. The project in which Emesa is participating involves an office development spanning 90,000 m2, in which it has invested €80 million and which is expected to be fully operational by 2023 (the construction work will begin in 2020).

Emesa also plans to make headway in the residential sector over the next few years. The company is going to build a development containing 40 homes for rent in Badalona after investing €12 million in this project.

Currently, the portfolio of Emesa Corporación spans more than 180,000 m2 and is worth more than €750 million. Emesa Corporación Empresarial generated revenues of €8.07 million last year.

Original story: Eje Prime (by C. Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Emesa’s Storage Space Company Boxinfiniti Debuts in Madrid with 5,100m2

22 March 2018 – Eje Prime

Emesa, the investment group owned by Emilio Cuatrecasas, is continuing to grow the businesses in which it operates. Boxinfiniti, which specialises in the rental of storage space and in which Emesa holds a stake, has made its debut in Madrid with the absorption of 5,100 m2 spread over three locations.

Two of the premises are located in the centre of Madrid (in the Cuatro Caminos-Nuevos Ministerios and Pacífico areas, close to Atocha station) and the third is located in Alcorcón. Together, the sites span a total surface area of 5,100 m2.

In Barcelona, with the upcoming opening of four new centres in the process of being implemented, the total surface area under management will increase by 3,650 m2. The new establishments there are located in the neighbourhoods of Eixample, Gràcia and Sants, in Barcelona and in Santa Coloma de Gramenet.

With these openings, Boxinfiniti, led by Luis Casanovas, is expanding its network to include thirteen storage centres in Barcelona and Madrid. “The company is constantly on the lookout for premises in the best locations of Barcelona and Madrid within the framework of its strategic plan”, according to sources at the group.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Barcelona’s 22@ District Will Put 270,000 m2 of Office Space on the Market in 2019

7 January 2018 – Expansión

Meridia, Värde, Emesa and other investors are constructing corporate buildings in the technological district of Barcelona in light of the shortage of available large spaces in the city.

The investment fund manager Meridia Capital, the US fund Värde Partners and the business corporation of Emilio Cuatrecasas, Emesa, are just three of the investors who are backing the development of office buildings in the 22@ district of Barcelona.

A report from BNP Paribas Real Estate forecasts that 405,300 m2 of new office space will come onto the market in the Catalan capital and its surrounding area in 2019, of which 60% will be concentrated in the technological 22@ district, where 270,000 m2 of space is being constructed.

Original story: Expansión (by Marisa Anglés)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Cuatrecasas Buys Another Asset On La Diagonal For €7M

13 July 2017 – Eje Prime

Emilio Cuatrecasas is on a roll on Barcelona’s Avenida Diagonal. The lawyer’s family office, Emesa, has redoubled its commitment to the avenue with the acquisition of the headquarters of the Ophthalmology Institute for €7 million. This purchase follows its recent acquisition of 31,000 m2 of land in Project Finestrelles, located in Esplugues de Llobregat (Barcelona), where it plans to build six office blocks.

The building in question this time, which used to house the headquarters of Grand Tibidabo, has a surface area of 2,000 m2 and is located at number 632 on La Diagonal, at the intersection with c/Sarrià. The property has a long-term rental contract with the clinic, which currently belongs to the Quironsalud group.  The property used to be owned by the former owner of the Ophthalmology Institute in Barcelona, Andreu Coret, through the firm Inmo 632, according to Expansión.

In recent months, the investment arm of Emilio Cuatrecasas has made several acquisitions, including of number 444 on La Diagonal, for which it paid €35 million. That property, known as the Majorica building, has three façades overlooking La Diagonal, Paseo de Gràcia and Calle Còrsega, and until December last year, it housed the offices of the law firm Cuatrecasas.

Last summer, Emesa also completed the acquisition of a unique asset. The investor group purchased the Ullastrer Palace, in the Baix Empordà area, with the aim of promoting a premium hotel chain. The estate, known as Can Romaguera, is currently being restored and offers up to 2,500 m2 of space for hotel use, with an investment of €7 million.

The asset portfolio of Emesa, which is led by Ferran Forrellad, is completed by a building at number 191 on Avenida Diagonal, which houses the new headquarters of Cuatrecasas; number 579 on Avenida Diagonal, where Emesa’s headquarters of located; two office buildings in Mas Balu and a logistics park in El Pla de Santa María, in Tarragona.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Emilio Cuatrecasas Buys Empordà Golf For €20M

10 July 2017 – Expansión

Emilio Cuatrecasas is continuing his commitment to the Costa Brava. A group of investors led by his holding company, Emesa Corporación, is finalising the purchase of Empordà Golf Resort from Habitat Inmobiliaria for around €20 million. The operation involves two 18-hole golf course in Gualta (Girona) and a hotel complex, which has 87 rooms and which is managed by Double Tree by Hilton.

The resort had awakened interest from other investors, but in the end, the lawyer has taken the lead in the bidding. The operation will now begin a due diligence phase. The group led by Emesa will go on to control 90% of the capital of the sports facility given that the remaining 10% will continue in the hands of numerous small shareholders, who are also members of the golf course.

The complex was constructed in 1996 by the Figueras family – the former owners of Habitat – and, since the beginning, its members have included well-known Catalan business people, such as Emilio Cuatrecasas himself, Pedro Fontana and members of the Puig, Esteve and Uriach families. Besides the hotel, the resort includes a residential area, with rental apartments and homes.

The purchase of Empordà Golf will not see the asset form part of the chain of rural hotels that Emilio Cuatrecasas is promoting in the Empordá region. In 2016, the lawyer announced his intention of launching a new brand specialising in small, high-end hotels and last summer, he completed his first acquisition: a small palace in Ullastret, which he will transform into a hotel after investing €7 million. Although this asset is located in the lawyer’s target region, the hotel at Empordà Golf does not fit with the profile of unique buildings that he is looking for in that case.

Emesa groups together the business and real estate stakes owned by Cuatrecasas and its assets are worth more than €480 million.

Habitat, which is chaired by Bruno Figueras, continues under the control of banks and international funds.

Original story: Expansión (by M. Anglés and J. Orihuel)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Cuatrecasas’ Family Office Buys Plot Of Land To Build 6 Offices

5 July 2017 – Eje Prime

The Cuatrecasas family has strengthened its real estate portfolio in Barcelona. Emesa, the investment arm of Emilio Cuatrecasas, has bought 31,000 m2 of land in Project Finestrelles, located in Esplugues de Llobregat (Barcelona), where it plans to build six office blocks, according to sources close to the operation. These plots were owned until now by Vaines, which was a subsidiary of Metrovacesa until five years ago.

Project Finestrelles has been assigned three uses, including the residential part, measuring 90,000 m2 for the construction of housing; the commercial area, where Inbisa has already started work on a complex measuring more than 99,000 m2; and offices. The latter space is divided into two projects: the first is being handled by Sacresa, owned by the Sanahuja family, which is building two office blocks, measuring 22,000 m2 each.

The second project was owned by Vaines until now. Emilio Cuatrecasas plans to construct a business park containing six offices blocks. This project received the green light in 2014, after twelve years of administrative procedures, and so now it is beginning to take shape. Emesa declined to comment on the operation, whose price has not been revealed.

In total, Finestrelles has a surface area of 395,000 m2, between Avenida Dels Països Catalans, the Ronda de Dalt, the A-2 motorway and Calle Laureà Miró. The plans for the site, which have driven by Sacresa, have received the blessing of the Town Hall from the beginning, although it is only now that the so-called “new Diagonal de Barcelona” is starting to take shape.

In this way, Emesa is taking another step towards its goal to increases its portfolio of assets. Excluding the Finestrelles operation, the group owns real estate assets covering around 125,000 m2, which represent more than half of the group’s assets, worth more than €480 million.

In recent months, the investment arm of Emilio Cuatrecasa has carried out several acquisitions. Its purchases have included number 444 on Avenida Diagonal, for which it paid €35 million. The property, known as the Majorica building, has three façades overlooking Diagonal, Paseo de Gràcia and Calle Còrsega, and until last December it housed some of the law firm Cuatrecasas’ offices.

Last summer, Emesa also completed the acquisition of a unique asset. The investment group purchased the Ullastrer palace in the Baix Empordà area, with the aim of promoting a premium hotel chain. The estate, known as Can Romaguera, is being restored and has up to 2,500 m2 of space for hotel use, with an investment of €7 million.

The asset portfolio of Emesa, led by Ferran Forrellad, is completed by: a building at number 191 on Avenida Diagonal, which houses the new headquarters of Cuatrecasas; a property at number 579 on Avenida Diagonal, which is home to the headquarters of Emesa; two office buildings in Mas Blau; and a logistics park in El Pla de Santa María, in Tarragona.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Emilio Cuatrecasa Launches Rural Hotel Chain In El Ampurdán

28 July 2016 – Expansión

Emilio Cuatrecasa has launched a proposal to make the most of the beautiful landscape in El Ampurdán and the Costa Brava.

Yesterday, the lawyer and businessman announced the launch of a new hotel chain, which will specialise in managing small high-end hotels located in the region of Baix Empordà, which groups together idyllic landscapes in the imaginary triangle bordered by the towns of Sant Feliu de Guíxols, Girona and Torroella de Montgrí, in the central part of the Costa Brava.

Through his holding company Emesa Corporación, Cuatrecasas has just acquired Palau de Ullastret, a farmhouse with large arches rising above the medieval walls of this inland town, close to La Bisbal d’Empordà, famous for the archaeological remains of its Iberian settlement.

Emesa plans to invest €7 million – a figure that include the purchase price – in transforming this historical building into a luxury hotel, whose opening date is yet to be determined. The small palace, which will undergo an extensive restoration, is located on a 2,500 sqm estate, known locally as Can Romaguera.

The project represents the cornerstone of a much more ambitious initiative, which involves weaving a network of ten luxury hotels over the next three years, in this coastal region, dotted with hundreds of farmhouses and ancient buildings.

The new chain owned by Cuatrecasas does not have a name yet and will be forged through the purchase of new unique properties, as well as the integration of hotels already in operation that will be adapted to the philosophy of the project. “With this initiative, we are trying to professionalise hotel activity in El Ampurdán, which is currently very fragmented and in the hands of individuals”, explained Ferran Forrellad, CEO of Emesa.

According to the director, the project has been inspired by regions such as Tuscany in Italy, “where there is more organisation and, therefore, much greater international promotion and awareness of the region”.

The new chain will focus on offering rest and comfort to its clients with facilities and rooms equipped with the latest technology and with a modern design, but “without the interferences of a hotel service”. Thus, gastronomic, health and gym services will only be offered on-demand and will be subcontracted to specialist companies.

Original story: Expansión (by Sergi Saborit)

Translation: Carmel Drake