Acciona, Amenabar and Vivenio Vying to Acquire Land in Valdebebas from Ferrovial

8 November 2019 – Ferrovial has received three firm offers for a plot of land in Valdebebas, just in front of the Cercanías stop. The three firms vying for the land are Amenabar, Vivenio and Acciona.

The land has a total of 27,200 square meters of surface area, 22,700 m2 for residential and 4,500 m2 for commercial development. Ferrovial expects to pocket roughly 2,000 euros per square meter, approximately 54 million euros. The land has enough space to build about 230 homes.

Original Story: El Confidencial – Elena Sanz

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Ferrovial Looks to Sell 27,200-M2 Plot of Land in Valdebebas for €54.5 Million

21 October 2019 – Ferrovial is looking to sell off its land in Valdebebas, a newly fashionable neighbourhood bordering La Moraleja, Operation Chamartín and the future Campus of Justice in northern Madrid. The Spanish multinational owns 27,200 square meters of land, 22,700-m2 of which are slated for residential construction.  The other 4,500 m2 is for commercial use.

Knight Frank Spain is mediating the sale, and there are currently three potential bidders, all offering at least 2,000 euros per square meter. Developers would have enough space to build 240 new homes on the site and are expected to use the build to rent format, which tends to mitigate risk. The sale of the land, which is considered highly attractive, should be finalised before the end of the year.

Original Story: La Información – Ana Sánchez Juárez

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Acciona Acquires a Plot of Land in Valdebebas as Ferrovial Looks to Sell Another

17 September 2019 Madrid’s real estate sector has seen a series of major transactions in recent months. In the most recent, Acciona acquired a 31,700-m2 plot of land from the company Celteo Business, including 26,018 m2 for residences and 5,755 m2 for stores. According to market sources, the conglomerate paid 2,000 euros/m2, a two-fold increase over the average price just five years ago. The deal, which totalled approximately 63 million euros, secured enough land to build about 260 homes.

Ferrovial, for its part, has decided to wrap up its development business and is looking to sell a plot of land just in front of the Cercanías train station. The firm is asking for about 2,000 euros per square meter or roughly 54 million euros for a 27,200-m2 plot of land. The land consists of 22,700 m2 for residences and 4,500 m2 for stores and would fit about 230 new homes.

Before sales begin on the Madrid Nuevo Norte development, Valdebebas is one of the few areas in Spain’s capital offering new housing. “Valdebebas is the only option for many families looking to buy a newly-built home… while it is also one of the few areas with finalist land for developers,” says Samuel Population of CBRE.

According to a study by Foro Consultores, there are currently 11 new developments underway in the area, totalling 857 new homes, almost half of which have already been sold.

The prices of the homes, according to the same firm, range between 450,000 and 650,000 euros, with the average price per square meter between 3,800 and 3,700 euros.

Original Story: El Confidencial – Elena Sanz

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Real Madrid to Invest €525M in the Modernisation of the Bernabéu Stadium

2 April 2019 – Eje Prime

On Tuesday, Real Madrid and the Town Hall of the Spanish capital announced the launch of a project to modernise the Santiago Bernabéu stadium, which will see a total investment of €525 million. The work will begin at the end of May and is due to be completed at the end of 2023, with no planned disruption to the fixture schedule during that period.

According to the club’s President, Florentino Pérez (pictured above, right), Real Madrid has already spent €500 million upgrading its facilities since 2000. Specifically, it has invested €256 million in several updates to the stadium and another €231 million in the construction of the Ciudad Real Madrid training ground in Valdebebas.

The latest project, designed by GMP Arquitectos/L-35/Ribas will involve a new step in the transformation of the stadium, although few details have been revealed at this stage. During the first phase, the La Esquina del Bernabéu shopping centre will be demolished to create a large square and another square will be built next to Paseo de la Castellana.

In total, 23,000 m2 of space will be freed up and distributed between stores and restaurants to complement the museum, which will also be expanded. The capacity of the stadium will also be expanded by 1,000, which will be dedicated in their entirety to people with reduced mobility or some kind of disability.

It is not yet known who will carry out the work or how the project will be financed, but a tender process for the execution of the work is scheduled to open in April. Four companies are predicted to participate: Acciona, FCC, Ferrovial and San José.

Original story: Eje Prime (by M. Menchén)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Iberdrola Puts Torre Auditori in Barcelona Up for Sale

19 March 2019 – Idealista

Iberdrola has put Torre Auditori, which forms part of the BCN Fira District business park in Barcelona, up for sale. The property comprises 21 storeys and spans a surface area of 22,899 m2, generating annual rental income of more than €4.3 million. The current occupancy rate of the property is 98% and its tenants include Cepsa, Ferrovial, Marmedesa, Asus and Iberdrola itself.

The building forms part of the business park that the company is constructing on Paseo de la Zona Franca, which currently comprises Torre Auditori and Torre Marina (which is leased to the pharmaceutical firm Esteve). Iberdrola is building two more properties, which will be handed over during the first quarter of 2021.

Original story: Idealista 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Masaveu Sells Land in the Port of Vigo for €2.8M

31 January 2019 – La Nueva España

Cementos Tudela Veguín, which forms part of the Asturian business group Masaveu, has obtained almost €2.8 million from the sale of land in the Port of Vigo. The plot measures 19,000 m2, was barely being used and is located in Rande.

Cementos Tudela Veguín, which has several warehouses in the Port of Vigo, also owned an area of land that was of interest to the Port authority to improve access and expand the area reserved for logistics. The directors of the Port of Vigo learned of the details of the land purchase operation last Friday, which was closed for €2,783,000, an amount that has already been transferred to the cement producer company.

The Masaveu family is considered to be the richest in Asturias and is amongst the wealthiest in all of Spain. Their wealth is estimated to amount to around €2.1 billion, according to a new list compiled by El Mundo, which analyses the largest 200 fortunes. The Masaveu family occupies 16th position in the ranking, which is led by the President of Inditex, Amancio Ortega, with assets worth €50.4 billion. He is followed by Rafael del Pino from Ferrovial, and Juan Roig from Mercadona (…).

Original story: La Nueva España (by A.O. & J.L.S)

Translation: Carmel Drake

FT: Spain’s Construction Sector Rises From The Ashes

28 September 2017 – Financial Times

When Juan Velayos left his job at the accountancy firm PwC to become chief executive of Spanish housebuilder Neinor Homes two years ago, some people thought he was crazy.

Construction companies in Spain once built more residential homes every year than the rest of western Europe combined, fuelled by cheap debt. But a 35% slump in prices after the 2007 financial crisis left much of the sector bankrupt.

Spain still has half a million new unsold homes, many in surreal empty cities that have become monuments to a speculative property bubble that brought down the country’s banking sector and the wider economy.

“The markets at the time were sceptical about the opportunity [in Spanish house building],” says Mr Velayos. “They were sceptical about the momentum for residential. They were surprised we were buying land so aggressively.”

But Neinor, created by US private equity group Lone Star in 2014, has become a success story, one of the country’s first residential homebuilders able to rise out of the ashes of the ruined sector and build again.

Six months ago Neinor Homes became the first to float on the Madrid stock exchange, with Lone Star selling 60% of the company, which was valued at €1.3bn. Its share price has risen by 13% since then.

“We knew there was an opportunity because the Spanish economy was growing again and for nearly a decade there had been practically no new residential homes built,” says Mr Velayos.

Neinor served as a catalyst for the whole sector, with others entering the market. Companies such as Aedas, Vía Célere, Aelca and Metrovacesa are also building, giving the sector depth for investors.

“Residential construction activity in Spain is finally back,” says Adolfo Ramirez-Escudero, chief executive of the Spanish arm of real estate service firm CBRE. “The demand is there and companies are building again.”

Many of these companies are also now considering initial public offerings. Two people with knowledge of the deal say that Aedas is considering a listing this year. Aedas declined to comment.

This comes as the wider Spanish property market seems to have turned a corner. House prices fell by 35.2% from 2007 to 2015, according to property site Idealista, but are up by 3% this year and rose by 2% last year.

Analysts say this is set to continue as Spain’s economy continues to grow at about 3% a year — one of the strongest in the eurozone.

“The scarcity of new housing in some places and the impulse of demand, supported by employment growth, point to new price increases,” says Jorge Sicilia, the chief economist of BBVA, the Spanish banking group.

Investment into Spain’s property market has come in stages, starting with international funds run by Goldman Sachs, Cerberus Capital Management and Blackstone, which bought bad loans and apartment portfolios as early as 2013.

This was followed by the creation of real estate investment trusts — known in Spain as Socimi — which shortly afterwards started looking at the commercial property and rental markets.

Four big Spanish Socimis — Axiare, Merlin Properties, Hispania and Lar España — are already up and running. Combined profits for the four groups in the first quarter of 2017 were up 50% from the same period last year.

But the return of the residential building sector on top of commercial suggests that the market is maturing and returning to normal after a decade of crisis that saw big players such as Reyal Urbis and Martinsa Fadesa file for bankruptcy.

“In commercial and residential property, everyone has the same thesis,” says Fernando Ramirez, head of investor relations at Merlin. “Spain is recovering and property is still cheap.”

The return of Spanish construction is good for the wider Spanish economy, particularly job creation. The construction sector once employed more than 2.5m people, compared with just 1m after the crash.

A rise in house prices is also positive for the banking sector, which has benefited from the influx of institutional money that has pushed up the prices of their portfolios of distressed property assets and provided a market to sell.

However, the story is not all positive.

Spain’s biggest listed construction groups such as ACS or Ferrovial are unlikely to benefit from higher property prices, as they are focused on large infrastructure projects, which are still in short supply as the government holds back on spending.

The recovery is also concentrated in big cities such as Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia, as well as the tourist hotspots such as Málaga and the Balearic Islands. In much of more rural Spain, the recovery has not happened.

This is partly due to the overhang of half a million unsold new houses in parts of Spain. “In Madrid and Barcelona, there is nowhere near enough houses and demand is outstripping supply,” says Fernando Encinar, the chief executive of Idealista.

“If you drive 40km from Madrid through to Valdeluz there are still thousands of empty properties and that market is a long way from recovering,” he says.

Mr Velayos adds that while the market is coming back, the country is a long way from the pre-financial crisis boom — adding that the frothy exuberance of those years is unlikely to return.

In effect, the market is developing on a different model from before the financial crisis, with building financed by equity rather than debt. “The days where the builder and the buyer were both 100% debt financed are long gone,” he says.

Original story: Financial Times

AEW Acquires Office Building On C/Francisco Silvela 106

22 September 2017 – El Confidencial

The fund AEW Europe has recently joined the growing number of investors who are backing the Madrilenian street Principe de Vergara, one of the main thoroughfares in the Chamartín neighbourhood. The road has witnessed a proliferation in the volume of important real estate operations involving corporate headquarters in recent years.

And it is on the corner of that street, at its intersection with Francisco Silvela, at number 106 on the street that bears the name of the historical Spanish politician, that a private investor, advised by Aguirre Newman, has sold a building with a surface area of 6,300 m2 to AEW for €30 million, according to sources familiar with the transaction.

This operation follows several other important transactions that have been closed recently in the area, whose proximity to the Avenida de America transport hub, makes for easy access to the airport and whose proximity to both the Salamanca neighbourhood and the Paseo de la Castellana business district, have caused interest from owners and tenants to soar.

One example is the recent sale of the building at number 42 Calle Suero de Quiñones, the new headquarters of the law firm Uría y Mendéndez, which Hispania sold to the businessman José Lladó, owner of Técnicas Reunidas. The Socimi agreed that sale in the spring, a few months before the construction work was due to finish. The doors of that office are expected to open in November, whereby enabling the law firm to expand the headquarters that it already has nearby at number 187, Principe de Vergara.

Meanwhile, the property at number 108 on the same street, right next door to the building that AEW has just acquired, is also owned by Hispania, which purchased it just over two years ago for €25 million. The next one along, number 112, is owned by Colonial, which bought the whole building two years ago; it has since invested €45 million in the complete renovation of the 11,400 m2 property.

Opposite, at number 125 Principe de Vergara, the insurance company Reale purchased the entire building from Banco Sabadell two years ago and has now installed its new headquarters there. Acciona also expressed interest in that property at the time, as it had wanted to move its headquarters there, just a few metres away from the central offices of its rival, Ferrovial.

With this operation, AEW completes its seventh investment in Spain in two years. The fund has made a strong commitment to the country, where it has just acquired the historical Mercado de Fuencarral, which it has already leased in its entirety to Decathlon. It also opened an office in Madrid in January, which is being led by Carsten Czarnetzki.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake

DonPiso: Invests €22M In Residential & Plans To Have 120 Offices By 2018

29 June 2017 – Eje Prime

It is one of the survivors of the property crisis, but with differences. DonPiso, founded in 1984, has lived through several economic crises and has seen itself both grow and contract. It has changed hands several times and has reached a new economic cycle, in which, finally, the real estate business seems to be getting a break. (…) It plans to have 120 offices operational this year and invest more than €22 million on the construction of around fifteen residential developments, as Emiliano Bermúdez, Deputy General Manager of DonPiso, explained to EjePrime.

DonPiso was one of the first real estate agencies to be founded in Spain, along with Grupasa, although it was not until 1997, that it began its expansion through franchises, achieving penetration across the whole of the Spanish market. Its mixed model, based on intercalating the opening of own offices with franchises, allowed it to leave Barcelona and begin expanding across the national market. “The results broke all expectations”, recalls Bermúdez.

In 2001, DonPiso was acquired by Ferrovial and, in 2006, it changed hands once again, on this occasion to be controlled by the real estate group Habitat. It was then, when the firm had a network of almost 400 offices, that the economic crisis hit its business, forcing Habitat into creditor bankruptcy and, whereby, leaving DonPiso in a delicate situation.

“Luis Pérez, José Antonio Pérez, Miguel Ángel Vázquez and I (Emiliano Bermúdez) joined forces and took control of DonPiso for €1.8 million”, said the Director. The distribution network was cut to fifty offices.

“We now find ourselves in a new era for DonPiso” – added the Director, “We have been born again and we have managed to weave a network of 90 establishments”. “The company is smaller, but it is not unreasonable to think that, at some point, we could be as large as we were ten years ago”, said the Director.

Roadmap 

In this way, DonPiso has set itself some ambitious objectives for the next few years. According to the company, the optimal outcome in 2017 would be to reach a network of 115 operational offices across Spain, which would mean opening 25 more in the next six months. Bermúdez sees that as “more than feasible, thanks to the pace that we are enjoying”.

Besides second-hand homes, the company’s plans also include a sizeable business relating to the new home segment, with its residential developments. It is currently marketing seven developments. “This year, we will build six more, at least, depending on the buildable land that we are able to access and in 2018, we plan to build between 5 and 6 additional developments”, added the Director.

According to DonPiso, each development requires an initial investment of €1.5 million. Then, according to the Director, you have to add the other expenses “which tend to be financed through debt and partners joining the project”. “The average DonPiso development sees around fifty homes coming onto the market”, said Bermúdez.

Thanks to all of these plans, DonPiso has also set itself the objective of increasing its turnover. In 2016, the company sold €309.6 million in terms of production, with 2,048 units and the business margin was €1.55 million. “The forecast for this year is optimistic: sales of more than 2,500 units and a growth margin of 25%”, said Bermúdez.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Ferrovial, FCC, Acciona & ACS Are Building Houses Again

25 May 2017 – El Confidencial

A decade after they sold or wrote off their real estate arms, the country’s largest construction companies are now returning to the residential property development sector. Ferrovial, ACS, Acciona and FCC have regained their appetite for property and although they have different paces and strategies in mind, they have all definitively decided to revive their real estate divisions.

In the case of the group chaired by Rafael del Pino, which sold Ferrovial Inmobiliaria to Habitat for €2,200 million at the end of 2006, it will lay the first stone of this new strategic phase in Valdebebas. It owns plot 128A there, in what is one of the most important urban planning developments in the north of Madrid, and it plans to build between 200 and 300 homes on the site.

And that is just the tip of the iceberg, given that as the group’s CEO, Íñigo Meirás, acknowledged to this newspaper, the firm “is willing to become a property developer once again”. (…).

This strategy, combined with the gradual recovery in the real estate sector, has allowed residential construction work to account for 5% of the group’s total building portfolio, having closed last year at €442 million, up by 31.7% YoY. The group aspires to increase those numbers, by resuming its property development activity, which has caused it to analyse land operations in different areas to the north of Madrid.

FCC Real Estate also wants to make a similar move. The division, led for the last year and a half by Xavier Fainé Garriga, has decided to start developing half a million m2 of land that it owns in the Madrilenian town of Tres Cantos. The company has owned the plots for years, and its construction division will also participate in their development, along with the real estate subsidiary Realia, which will collaborate on the marketing side. (…).

Meanwhile, Acciona has a more ambitious plan, after it tried, two years ago, to divest its real estate arm, by listing it on the stock market or selling a stake in it to a fund – it has now ended up deciding to return to development. That was recognised by the firm’s Corporate Development Director, Juan Muro Lara, in March, when he announced the launch of 16 housing developments: 13 in Spain and the rest in Mexico and Poland.

In parallel, the group is finalising the transfer of its rental properties to Merlin, in a deal disclosed by El Confidencial in October, which will see the former’s exit from the real estate business. It also wants to push ahead with the sale of its hotels and office buildings through individual operations.

In the case of ACS, the firm is carrying out its strategy in the development segment through Cogesa, the historical subsidiary of the group, which stands out because it is the owner of the group’s two main corporate headquarters, the office buildings located in Las Tablas and on Avenida Pío XII in Madrid, and for owning sizeable land portfolios in areas such as Montecarmelo, Arroyo Fresno, Las Tablas, Carabanchel and Ensanche de Vallecas.

The turning point for this subsidiary, which is led by the brother of Florentino Pérez, Enrique, came two years ago, when it carried out a capital increase amounting to €44 million and then acquired one of the last plots of residential land in Montecarmelo for €2,200/m2. That figure turned the operation into one of the most onerous since the burst of the bubble, but is now seen in a very different light. (…).

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake