Eroski Sells & Leases Back a Hypermarket & Gas Station in Velez-Málaga

18 December 2018 – Alimarket

Eroski has sold the hypermarket and gas station that it owned in the El Ingenio Shopping Centre in the Malagan town of Velez-Málaga to the property developer Sociedad Azucarera Larios Patrimonio S.L. (Salsa Patrimonio), which forms part of the Azucarera Larios group. The assets will continue to be managed by the Basque cooperative under a 25-year lease contract. The centre has belonged to Eroski, through its company Cecosa Hipermercados, since its inauguration in November 2000.

According to a statement issued by Salsa Patrimonio, the firm is going to invest €25 million in the purchase and subsequent renovation of the hypermarket, which will reduce its surface area by 35%, from 13,782 m2 to 8,816 m2. Moreover, the statement highlighted that the objective of the operation is “to strengthen El Ingenio’s position as a reference shopping centre in the western Costa del Sol”, and the renovation will contribute to improving the shopping experience of its customers.

Indeed, Eroski is one of the retailers that is backing the sale and leaseback arrangement the most. This year, it has sold six other hypermarkets in this way in the Pais Vasco and Cantabria for €105 million, and just a few days ago, it did the same with its establishment in the El Mirador Shopping Centre, in the town of Jinámar (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria).

Original story: Alimarket (by Rosa de Lera)

Translation: Carmel Drake

El Corte Inglés Plans to Open 1,000 Gas Station Stores in Conjunction with Repsol

15 October 2018 – Real Estate Press

There are almost 11,500 gas stations in Spain, of which more than 8,500 have shops. El Corte Inglés was one of the first groups to operate in conjunction with oil companies and that group is now planning to open 1,000 new gas station stores together with Repsol.

Gas station stores typically have a wide range of opening hours, span an extensive network and are easy to stop at to make quick purchases. It was only a matter of time before distribution groups decided to team up with oil companies to manage their service station stores. Now the time has come for those formats to flourish.

The formula allows supermarket chains to grow rapidly without having to recruit staff or undertake significant investments. Meanwhile, the petrol companies benefit from offering more attractive service stations, with a more extensive range of products and a lower cost base by entrusting the management of their stores to specialists with a volume of purchases that generates significant savings.

Sales at gas station stores amounted to €580 million in 2017, although the potential of this format is much greater.

Forecast growth

El Corte Inglés was one of the first groups to operate agreements with petrol companies. Initially, it constituted the company Gespevesa together with Repsol in 1998, which they control (50%) and which owns 39 service stations. Last year, that entity recorded revenues of €39.2 million, down by 26% and earned profits of €3.8 million, up by 28%. Next, it joined forces with Cepsa to develop a refuelling discount strategy. And, now, it has committed to a major agreement with Repsol to create “the largest network of convenience stores in Spain” under the brand Supercor Stop & Go.

Carrefour has also changed its petrol partner over the years: it started working on this type of alliance with BP, but in 2013, it opted to join Cepsa to grow a new format, Carrefour Express Cepsa, which currently comprises 333 stores. One fact serves to explain the importance of this agreement for the French group, namely, that it is the format with the most stores in around twenty Spanish provinces, including Asturias, Murcia, the Balearic Islands, Castellón, Lleida, Toledo, Valladolid and Zaragoza, amongst others.

Día is the other group that has heavily backed the format, with the launch of a pilot project together with BP in four of its gas stations in Madrid under the Shop brand. Previously, in 2015, Dia signed an agreement in collaboration with Disa (Shell) to supply the counters in five of its stores. BP has also worked with other partners. Between 2013 and 2016, Alcampo supplied products, including its own brand range, to stores in its gas stations. Moreover, BP has operated some regional alliances for years with other smaller supermarket chains to generate benefits through their loyalty cards (…).

Finally, Galp, the fifth largest petrol company in Spain, has not been averse to these agreements either; it has worked with GM Food, the former Miquel Group. Their partnership began in 2013, with 12 pilot stores operating under the Sar brand; it continued the alliance once that project had finished, with the Catalan group as the supplier of its stores; and now, the two firms have started another trial in eight locations under the format Suma Exprés.

Original story: Real Estate Press

Translation: Carmel Drake

Barings Completes €23M Capital Increase & Prepares Socimi Debut

28 February 2018 – Eje Prime

Barings is not wasting any time in Spain and is taking advantage of the good health of the country to generate profits from its investments. The British fund has just carried out a €23.1 million capital increase for its Spanish subsidiary Barings Core Spain, which, according to market sources, it is preparing to convert into a Socimi and debut on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) within the next few months.

Specifically, the company has increased its share capital to finance the purchase of new assets and to meet the company’s financing needs. Following this increase, which was published in the Official Gazette of the Mercantile Registry (Borme), the company’s resulting subscribed share capital amounts to €47.1 million.

Now, after a very active year in terms of acquisitions in the Spanish market, the group has decided to transform its company and turn it into a Socimi. Although the company is in the middle of carrying out that process, it does not yet have a final date for the completion of the transformation. The group is also working in parallel to prepare the future Socimi to start to trade on the alternative stock market.

In this way, all of the assets that form part of the Barings portfolio would move across to be managed by its Socimi. They include the recently acquired Berceo shopping centre, in Logroño (…).

Also in 2017, the British company backed commercial assets with the purchase of a prime retail outlet in Spain. Barings acquired the store at number 64 Calle Velázquez in Madrid. With a retail surface area of 1,638 m2, the establishment is currently occupied by Banco Popular.

In terms of logistics assets, last year, Barings also took responsibility for fattening up its property portfolio with those kinds of products. In April, the group purchased a logistics asset in Madrid from GLL Real Estate Partners for €35 million. The warehouse has a surface area of 56,000 m2 and is leased to Ceva (…).

Before the end of 2017, Barings also completed another purchase. In December, the international manager acquired two assets in Majadahonda (Madrid) for €17.6 million, owned until then by López-Real, and occupied by the Eroski supermarket chain. The fund purchased a storeroom and gas station, spanning a total surface area of 10,900 m2.

Last year, Barings also strengthened its management team in Spain. The fund announced that, as part of the on-going expansion of its European offer, it had appointed Carlos de Oya as Director of Asset Management in the Spanish market. Barings has one office in Spain, located at number 38 Calle Serrano, in Madrid.

Barings Real Estate Advisers is one of the largest diversified real estate investment managers in the world. The group is an active investor in private and listed markets, in both equities and debt, and provides fundamental, value-added and opportunistic investment and advisory services to institutional and other qualifying investors around the world. The group manages an asset portfolio worth €271 billion.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Barings Acquires 2 Logistics Assets in Madrid for €17.6M

11 December 2017 – Eje Prime

Barings Real Estate is closing its ambitious expansion plan for Spain in 2017. Just weeks after it purchased a 29,000 m2 logistics centre in Zaragoza, the international manager has acquired two assets in Majadahonda (Madrid) for €17.6 million; the same amount it spent on the operation in the Aragonese capital.

The fund has acquired a warehouse and a gas station, which span a combined land area of 10,900 m2. The company has also announced that it will lease the centre to the multinational furniture retailer Conforama under a ten-year contract.

With this new acquisition, Barings has accumulated a portfolio of non-residential assets in Spain worth almost €100 million during 2017. In April, the manager purchased a logistics space in Madrid measuring 56,000 m2 for €35 million and in July it bought an asset measuring 1,600 m2 for €21.6 million. In addition to the two centres it acquired in the last month, the company has now spent €90 million in Spain.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Kingbook Injects €22M to Offset Losses & Buy New Assets

29 November 2017 – Eje Prime

Kingbook is reorienting its financial situation. The Socimi, which specialises in gas stations, has announced a capital increase amounting to €21.6 million to offset its losses, according to explanations provided by the company. The company, which is owned by GL Europe Reit, which owns a 60% stake, and JZ Real Estate, with a 40% stake, will use this capital injection to eliminate a considerable part of its current liabilities and to increase its own funds.

According to the information document prepared by Kingbook, “the purpose of this increase is to resolve the company’s equity imbalance”. This increase has been subscribed by Holdreit in its entirety, the company’s sole shareholder. On 11 July, the company decided to increase its share capital by €4.52 million, through the issue and launch into circulation of 4.52 million new shares with a nominal value of €1, through the offsetting of credits, with an issue premium that amounted to €17.1 million in total. At present, “the company is waiting for final approval from the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) before its share price reflects the increase in value resulting from the capital increase, which should happen within the next few days”, according to the group.

The report also highlights that the Socimi has incurred losses since it started operating. As at 30 September 2017, the result for the year was negative, with losses of €1.25 million. The group has seen its losses increase, given that during the same period last year, it made a loss of €767,390. “Following this move, the company’s equity position has been restored, with own funds of €23.3 million”.

Nevertheless, Kingbook has a solid portfolio of assets to continue operating for the next few years, which it has managed to increase by 21.5% over the last year, to €38.9 million. The company owns land worth €10.3 million and buildings worth €20 million, compared with €16.3 million a year ago.

Moreover, in the last year, Kingbook has added more than a dozen gas stations to its real estate portfolio. The company has acquired gas stations in León, in San Andrés de Rabanedo, for €900,000; in Cantabria, in Castro Urdiales, for €1.4 million; and in Burgos, in Miranda del Ebro, for €2.3 million, amongst others. Kingbook has spent €7.5 million on new acquisitions in total so far this year.

Moreover, the company announced in October that it is in the process of expanding its asset portfolio into other business areas besides gas stations.

Although the group explained that it has achieved high levels of efficiency in the management of its portfolio thanks to its specialisation, it has indicated that it does not want to limit its activity to a niche as specific as gas stations, given that it considers that “it has the financial potential and management resources to venture into other areas and to achieve competitive returns”.

In terms of the new business areas that Kingbook is exploring to incorporate into its portfolio, potential assets include parking lots and other infrastructure linked to the world of transport.

The Socimi currently manages 57 real estate assets where fuel distribution activities are carried out (gas stations) and also owns one hotel and one industrial warehouse (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by C. Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

TH Real Estate Buys Hypermarket In L’Aljub Shopping Centre For €18.7M

17 October 2017 – Observatorio Inmobiliario

TH Real Estate has purchased the hypermarket premises in the L’Aljub Shopping Centre in Elche, from Eroski, through its investment vehicle SEVA (Southern European Value-Add Mandate) for €18.7 million. SEVA is a vehicle managed by TH Real Estate for the investors TPG Real Estate and Partners Group, focusing on value-added investments and returns within the retail sector in Southern Europe. Including L’Aljub, this vehicle includes three assets managed in Spain and Italy, worth more than €300 million.

This investment in L’Aljub involves 9,900 m2 of space corresponding to the hypermarket, as well as 4,500 m2 of space occupied by Primark and a 200 m2 petrol station, operated by Eroski.

TH Real Estate is planning to carry out improvements at the property. Eroski will continue as the tenant and will undertake a restructuring of the space, which will reduce the hypermarket space to 5,100 m2. That will free up approximately 4,800 m2 of leasable space for the entry of new operators, whereby expanding the shopping centre area, which currently receives more than 7 million visitors per year, on average.

The L’Aljub shopping centre, which is owned by TH Real Estate, has a constructed surface area of 43,000 m2 and contains more than 100 stores. It is home to many of the major fashion, leisure and restaurant brands, such as H&M, Inditex, Primark and ABC cinemas. It is located in the city of Elche, 20km away from Alicante and 50km from Murcia, which makes it a strategic enclave on the southern axis of the Mediterranean Arc.

“We are very happy with the completion of this transaction and we are hoping to carry out the activities and remodelling work necessary to equip this asset with greater added value, as well as promote the incorporation of new operators, which will be very positive for clients visiting the centre”, said Marta Cladera de Codina, Director of TH Real Estate for the Iberian Peninsula.

Original story: Observatorio Inmobiliario

Translation: Carmel Drake