HNA Acquires Logistics Platform in Guadalajara for €10.5 Million

28 October 2019 – HNA has acquired a logistics platform in Alovera, Guadalajara, from an undisclosed family office in Madrid for 10.5 million euros. The consultancy Knight Frank and InmoKing Real Estate advised on the deal.

The acquisition of the 16,674 square-meter asset is part of HNA’s current strategy of increasing its investments in the real estate sector.

In February, the company also acquired the office building located at Calle Emilio Vargas  2, in Madrid. The 7,574-m2 building has seven floors and is currently 100% leased.

Original Story: Eje Prime

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

B&B Sells Its Last Hotel in Spain to Miratres for €1.7 Million

13 August 2019

The French hospitality group, B&B, sold its last hotel in Spain to the Miratres family office for 1.7 million euros. The hotel in Oviedo was the firm’s last directly owned property.  Now, B&B is focusing its investment strategy on long-term guaranteed rental contracts.

In this manner, B&B is looking to double its market share in Spain and Portugal from 32 to 64 hotels by 2022. The firm expects to inaugurate fifteen new venues by the end of next year, ten in Spain and another five in Portugal.

Original Story: Eje Prime

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

 

ASG Homes Negotiates the Sale of 1,000 Rental Homes to Institutional Investors

19 June 2019 – Expansión

ASG Homes, the property development arm of the European manager ASG, is following in the footsteps of many of the major property developers in Spain by putting up for sale 1,000 rental homes.

The announcement comes in response to interest from institutional investors in acquiring and managing portfolios of rental homes, given the booming demand in the rental market.

Specifically, ASG Homes is negotiating the sale of 3 of its developments in San Sebastián, Madrid and Sevilla, which will be worth €200 million once finished, with investment funds, Socimis and family offices.

ASG Homes had planned to hold onto the properties and manage them itself but the strong interest from investors has resulted in a change of tack. In this way, the company is emulating the strategies of several listed property developers, such as Metrovacesa and Aedas Homes.

In total, ASG Homes has a landbank spanning 500,000 m2 with the capacity to build 5,000 homes distributed across Madrid, Alicante, Estepona, Marbella, Salamanca, Barcelona, Sevilla and Valencia. It launched its business in Spain in 2013 and invests not only in the residential sector, but also in the hotel, shopping centre and office segments.

Original story: Expansión (by Rebeca Arroyo)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Insur Teams Up with Wealthy Andalucían Families to Grow its Property Business in Madrid

18 April 2019 – El Confidencial

Wealthy Andalucían families are teaming up with the real estate group Insur to work on projects in the housing, office and commercial sectors. That is according to various sources in the property sector speaking to El Confidencial. The company itself has declined to comment.

Having previously joined forces with the Moya Yoldi (Persán) and Cosentino families, the company is now looking to expand beyond Andalucía in partnership with other family offices. Possible candidates include the Domínguez de la Maza family, owner of Mayoral and the Guillén family (owner of Acesur-Coosur), with which it has already invested in Sevilla.

Insur is keen to diversify its geographical market (75% of its assets are currently located in Andalucía) and Madrid is an obvious option, thanks to the liquidity of the market. The firm is already building 250 homes there in the towns of Valdemoro, Boadilla and Villaviciosa.

The aim of the company chaired by Ricardo Pumar is to generate stable annual revenues of €20 million from rental income, up from the €12 million recorded last year.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Carlos Pizá)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Mazabi to Grow its Socimi to Make Stock Market Debut with €1bn in Assets

18 March 2019 – Expansión

Mazabi, the firm that manages the wealth of 35 family offices and which owns €1.54 billion in assets, is getting its ducks in a row ahead of the planned debut of its Socimi Silicius. The intention is for that entity to take ownership of the majority of the firm’s rental properties and whereby grow its portfolio to at least €1 billion before its IPO.

Currently, Silicius owns 17 assets, spanning 71,244 m2, worth €156 million in the office, retail, hotel and logistics segments. During 2019, new properties will be transferred to it to increase its portfolio to €740 million by the end of the year, with an associated debt of €240 million.

Moreover, 80% of the operations that the manager executes over the coming months will also be transferred to the Socimi. Mazabi typically invests between €100 million and €150 million per year, according to its CEO, Juan Antonio Gutiérrez (pictured above).

New investors

At the same time, Mazabi is looking for investors who want to get involved in its project. To this end, it has engaged KPMG to find an investor to acquire a stake in the Socimi before it is listed. At this stage, the firm has not decided whether Silicius will make its debut on the MAB or the main stock market. The timings have not been confirmed either, but if Silicius is registered as a Socimi in July, then it would make its debut on the MAB no later than July 2021.

Original story: Expansión (by Rebeca Arroyo)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

B&B Sells another Hotel in Spain to the fund Corum for €6.6M

22 January 2019 – Expansión

The French hotel chain B&B Hotels – owned by the fund PAI Partners – has sold a hotel in Viladecans (Barcelona) to the French fund Corum for €6.6 million. It is the chain’s largest hotel in Spain, with 216 rooms.

This operation follows the sale of eight hotels that the company completed last year, also to Corum. Like it did then, B&B is going to continue operating the latest asset under a rental arrangement for at least 15 years. Following the sale, B&B owns just two hotels in Spain, in Oviedo and Barcelona (…).

B&B now operates 30 establishments in Spain and plans to continue growing its portfolio in the country during 2019. Its hotels in the country are owned by funds, Socimis and family offices, such as Corum, Atom, Covivo, Doalca and Azata.

Original story: Expansión (by R.A.)

Translation: Carmel Drake

BNP Paribas: RE Investment Rose by 8% in 2018 to €11.6bn

9 January 2019 – El Periódico

The volume of annual investment in the Spanish real estate sector amounted to €11.63 billion in 2018, which represented an increase of 8% compared to 2017. If we add the corporate operations with underlying real estate to that volume, then the figure increases to €19 billion, which represents an investment record since the end of the crisis, according to the latest report from BNP Paribas Real Estate in Spain. The report highlights that interest from investors in the Spanish real estate sector in 2018 was at its highest level for a decade.

During the fourth quarter of the year, the volume of direct investment in real estate assets – offices, logistics warehouses, hotels, retail and residential – amounted to €3.7 billion in total, which represented an increase of 58% YoY. The evolution of investor activity, therefore, exceeded the expectations of the sector at the beginning of the year.

“The good times that the fundamentals of the market are enjoying, with occupancy levels at maximums and rents that are stable or expanding in the most consolidated markets, together with the surplus capital and the limited alternatives offered by other financial products, have fostered a frenetic pace of activity in the investment market”, explains the report.

By type of asset, the commercial sector (retail) was the star of the year. The volume invested in commercial assets during 2018 amounted to €4.28 billion, which represents an increase of 23% compared to 2017. During the fourth quarter, investment reached €1.26 billion, and so the sector achieved a quarterly market share of 35%. The largest operation during the final quarter of the year was the purchase of a portfolio of three shopping centres – Max Center, Gran Casa and Valle Real – by Sonae Sierra and Perter Varbacka for €485 million.

Commercial yields

Demand from investors for high street retail assets was high, given that they consider them to be a very stable product. Similarly, there was a high interest in land for the development of retail parks, in light of the scarce supply of this type of asset. The yields continued at 3.00% for prime premises; between 5.00% and 5.25% for prime shopping centres; and at 5.75% for prime retail parks.

In terms of the office market, the investment volume recorded during the fourth quarter was €986 million taking the total figure for the year to €2.228 billion. That represented a slight YoY decrease of 4%. The shortage of products for sale meant that fewer operations materialised in 2018 than in 2017. The prime yield in the office market remained at 3.25% in Madrid and 3.50% in Barcelona.

The logistics market continues to rise. The increase in e-commerce and the strong performance of the consumer sector and the economy, in general, have encouraged investment in this type of asset. The investment volume registered during the fourth quarter of the year amounted to €400 million, whilst the total figure for the year (€1.3 billion) represented a new investment record, and an increase of 30% compared to 2017. The shortage of products, combined with the high investment pressure resulted in a considerable adjustment in yields, which amounted to 5.30% in the prime logistics market in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Investors

Investment funds were the great stars of the market, representing 61% of the total volume transacted in 2018. Socimis have been very present in the investment market, both on the buy and sell sides in the main land transactions to develop new products. Finally, the presence of family offices (private investors) stood out, with acquisitions, in general, for volumes of less than €50 million.

Alternative investments remained in the spotlight of investors, who were mainly attracted by student residences, clinics and nursing homes for the elderly. The cumulative volume invested in those types of assets amounted to €600 million in 2018.

Original story: El Periódico (by Max Jiménez Botías)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Cerberus, Intrum & DoBank Bid to Acquire Altamira

15 November 2018 – El Confidencial

There is still an appetite for the servicers’ business. The sale of the 85% stake that Apollo owns in Altamira is making its first cut of candidates, with some of the most high profile investors in the segment amongst the finalists. According to financial sources, the fund Cerberus (Haya Real Estate), the Swedish firm Intrum (Nordic Capital) and the Italian firm DoBank (Fortress) are the candidates that have progressed in the process, which is being coordinated by Goldman Sachs, and which was relaunched after the summer following months on the table.

Other players in the sector interested in Spain are also in the process, both at the domestic and European level. One of those new candidates is the US firm Davidson Kempner, which has a portfolio of USD 30 billion under management and with interests in the transformation of toxic assets in the United Kingdom and Ireland, according to sources involved in the operation.

Apollo is willing to take advantage of the hunger for this type of vehicle to make gains, although it does so after four years at the helm of the servicer and having not been awarded any of the large real estate portfolios that the banks have sold (Santander to Blackstone, BBVA to Cerberus, CaixaBank to Lone Star and the Sabadell-Solvia process, in whose final stretch it is not participating). In fact, this divestment comes after Apollo’s manager for the last few years – Andrés Rubio – left the fund.

The price of the management platform could reach €1.5 billion (debt included), a business for which Apollo paid €664 million in January 2014 in exchange for an 85% stake (the remaining 15% is still owned by Banco Santander). The agreement comprised the management of toxic assets (recovery of loans and sale of properties) until 2028, although the transformation of that perimeter has led to a change in the management conditions (commissions) and to the repayment of a €200 million dividend.

Altamira has assets under management amounting to more than €50 billion, compared with €26 billion in 2014, and a portfolio comprising more than 82,000 properties at the end of 2017, making it the largest servicer in operation in Spain. In addition to its contract with Santander, it also manages assets for Sareb (which account for 30% of its portfolio) and for third parties – international investors, financial institutions, family offices and institutional clients – as a result of the international expansion plan launched in 2017.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Carlos Hernanz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Dragados is Asking for c. €180M for 88,000 m2 Buildable Plot in Tetuán (Madrid)

6 August 2018 – El Confidencial

A new and powerful land operation is taking shape in the centre of the Spanish capital. The star is Dragados, one of the heavyweights in the construction sector in Spain. The subsidiary of ACS has been trying to sell several plots, which together span a buildable surface area of just over 80,000 m2, on Paseo de la Dirección in the Tetuán district in the north of Madrid and just 2 km from the Cuatro Torres, for almost a year. And this area has just received the green light from the Town Hall of Madrid, which approved a Partial Plan on Tuesday that will undoubtedly favour land transactions since it means the urban planning risk has disappeared.

According to the sources consulted, the plots have been on the market for a year, but the high price expectations of Dragados – which amount to around €180 million – have prevented the sale from being closed, until now. Large property developers, investment funds and family offices have all expressed their interest. The construction company is being advised by Colliers International, which declined to comment on the deal.

On the table is a real gem, given that the plots are all finalist, in other words, ready to be built on. Such assets are in very short supply inside the M-30. Specifically, the site comprises two plots for the construction of private housing and two other plots for the construction of social housing properties (VPPL) and mixed-use assets (offices and tertiary).

For the former, which have a buildability of around 40,000 m2, Dragados is asking for around €2,500/m2 (…), in other words, around €100 million, which would make it one of the largest land operations in the capital in recent months. “That price would mean selling the future homes at prices of around €5,000/m2, which is way above current market prices in the area”, say the same sources. House prices in the area amount to around €2,400/m2 – €3,000/m2, depending on the types of homes.

For the plots to be used for social housing and offices – which also have a buildability of approximately 40,000 0m2 – the vendor’s price expectations amount to around €80 million. Despite the boom in the capital, these figures exceed the prices that the potentially interested parties are willing to pay.

Ten years in the making

With the approval this Tuesday from the Town Hall of the new planning order for the area, it seems that finally, and after more than a decade, work is going to begin on this ambitious urban remodelling project. It will involve the construction of around 2,000 new homes, most of which will be protected in some way (VPPB and VPPL), including two rehousing buildings and several 25-storey towers. To put that into context, the Cuatro Torres have between 45 and 58 floors (…).

Historically, Paseo de la Dirección has been a downtrodden area in the north of Madrid with numerous substandard homes that would benefit greatly from the definitive launch of Madrid Nuevo Norte – formerly Operación Chamartín – just 2km away. What’s more, the site is very close to the capital’s financial district par excellence, Azca, as well as to Plaza Castilla, the hub for much of Madrid’s land transport network (…).

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz & R. Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake

CBRE: Investment in High Street Premises Will Exceed €1.1bn in 2018

5 July 2018 – Eje Prime

Commercial premises, especially those located on the most prime streets of Spain, are proving highly sought-after. According to CBRE, the high street investment market is going to achieve record figures in 2018, up to a total of €1.1 billion. The culprits? The German fund Deka and Inditex, in addition to the strength of secondary cities in the country.

During the course of the last two years, investment in high street assets remained stable at around €800 million per year, after peaking at €1.01 billion in 2015. In 2018, according to calculations from the real estate consultancy CBRE, the investment volume will exceed the €1 billion threshold again, primarily due to the impact of the sale to Deka of a batch of 16 Zara stores for €400 million and the boost from activity beyond Madrid and Barcelona.

Deka has whereby become a catalyst for the retail investment market in Spain, together with Generali and Union Investment, which also starred in major investment operations during the first few months of 2018.

Deka’s €400 million operation was the largest in the last year and a half, followed by the purchase by Hines of number 17 Paseo de Gracia for €113 million and the acquisition by Generali of number 9 Preciados for €107 million.

Institutional investors are the main drivers of the investment market in this segment, according to the Retail keys in Spain report in CBRE. “In recent years, several overseas institutional investors have entered the Spanish market and many have been active in 2017 and 2018”, according to the document, which points out that Socimis such as Tander, Ores and Silicius have also been interested in the sector.

Madrid and Barcelona are continuing to be the main magnets for high street investment in Spain and, together, they account for 79% of the total expenditure. “Nevertheless, other cities in Spain are booming and demand is rising for investment products in cities such as Bilbao, Valencia, Sevilla and Málaga”, says the document.

The displacement of demand to other cities is a consequence of product shortages and low returns. On the one hand, according to CBRE, operators have accentuated their preferences for prime streets, which has strengthened the shortage of products. “Premises with recently signed contracts are sparking a lot of interest, given that if they reflect market rents, they become a very stable long-term investment”, says the document.

On the other hand, the pressure on returns remains strong and in 2017, they were compressed further still, reaching levels of 3.25% in Madrid and 3.50% in Barcelona for the most prime products. The “historically low” values are repeated in other European cities, with 3.25% in Berlin, 3% in Milan, 2.75% in Paris and 2.25% in Munich.

As a result of those two elements, investor interest is extending to other cities in Spain, although the operations closed tend to be of greater importance, “given that the premises and the rents are lower and the returns are higher”.

With investment of €170 million outside of Barcelona and Madrid in 2017, several purchases stand out such as M&G’s acquisition of the H&M store on Reyes Católicos in Granada as well as of the El Corte Inglés building in Plaza la Magdalena in Sevilla.

Valencia and Bilbao are the markets that, typically, generate the most interest from investors due to the size of the two cities, the importance of their high streets and the role of tourism. The tradition of investment in the segment by local family offices means that returns there are compressed to 4%.

Retail and shopping centres

High street premises accounted for 25% of the total investment in retail in 2017, well behind shopping centres, which accounted for 51% of the total, but ahead of retail parks (15%) and portfolios of supermarkets and hypermarkets (9%) (…).

In Spain in 2017, investment in the Spanish retail market amounted to €3.3 billion. CBRE forecasts that the figure will amount to €2.9 billion in 2018, boosted by high street investment (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by P. Riaño)

Translation: Carmel Drake