Unibail-Rodamco Puts 4 Shopping Centres Up For Sale

14 March 2018 – Eje Prime

Unibail-Rodamco is getting rid of a package of assets that are non-strategic for the group. The French giant has put the following complexes up for sale: Los Arcos, in Sevilla; Bahía Sur, in Cádiz; Vallsur, in Valladolid, and El Faro, in Badajoz, on the basis that they do not fulfil the group’s needs in the Spanish market, according to sources close to the company speaking to Eje Prime.

According to the same sources, “the assets that the group wants to divest are profitable, but due to their location, size and strategy, the firm has decided to get rid of them”. Unibail-Rodamco has entrusted the sale of these four assets to the real estate consultancy firm Cushman&Wakefield.

Sector sources say that, initially, the Equinocio shopping centre in Madrid was also going to be put on the market alongside the other four assets, however, Unibail-Rodamco must have changed its mind at the last moment. The price that Unibail-Rodamco has set for each asset is unknown.

The sale of these four assets forms part of the operation that the firm carried out last year with Barnasud, the complex acquired by Meridia Capital, a Catalan fund owned by the businessman Javier Faus, which paid Unibail-Rodamco €35 million for the asset.

In recent years, the French group has spent a significant amount on the renovation of some of its shopping centres in Spain. The most ambitious project was the Glòries shopping centre, where the company invested €150 million on its complete transformation. In total, the transformation added 12,500 m2 of public space, spread over 8,500 m2 of new streets, 2,500 m2 of urbanisation and pavements around the site and 1,500 m2 of new green space in the 22@ neighbourhood.

Whilst Unibail-Rodamco waits to receive the green light for the expansion of one of its main shopping centres in Spain, La Maquinista, the group’s portfolio in Spain comprises 12 shopping centres, with Barcelona and Madrid as the cities that are home to the most complexes. Whilst in the Catalan capital, the company operates La Maquinista, Glòries and Splau, in Madrid it manages La Vaguada, Equinoccio and Parquesur shopping centres.

In the rest of the country, Unibail-Rodamco has one complex in Valencia, Bonaire; one in Cádiz, Bahía Sur; one in Sevilla, Los Arcos; Vallsur, in Valladolid; El Faro, in Badajoz, and one in San Sebastián, which operates under the name Garbera.

Currently, the group led by Christophe Cuvillier has a portfolio in Spain worth €3.6 billion, which receives 126.2 million visitors per year. These assets represent 10% of the firm’s global portfolio.

Double-digit growth in Spain

The company ended last year in the Spanish market with a net profit of €161 million, up by 10.3% compared to 2016, when the group earned €146 million.

In this way, Spain has become one of the highest growth countries for Unibail-Rodamco. In all of the markets in which it operates, the French company recorded a net profit of €1.35 billion in 2017, up by 5.8% compared to the previous year, when its earnings amounted to €1.27 billion (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

C&W: RE Inv’t In Retail Sector Exceeded €4,300M In 2016

2 February 2017 – Finanzas

Real estate investment in the retail sector – commercial assets – in Spain exceeded €4,300 million in 2016, up by 22% compared to the previous year, thanks to the completion of 45 operations, according to the Marketbeat Retail España report, compiled by the real estate consultancy firm Cushman & Wakefield.

The study indicates that much of this investment came from overseas investors, particularly in the case of shopping centres.

Nevertheless, overall, domestic capital increased to account for 67% of financing in 2016, compared to 8% in 2007, due to the rise of the Socimis.

The CEO of Cushman & Wakefield in Spain, Oriol Barrachina, said that retail is one of the “clearest” indications that the market has become globalised.

Moreover, Barrachina commented on the need to increase “transformation” and “diversification” to generate wealth “in other neighbourhoods”.

In relation to retail complexes, the report indicated that they covered a total surface area of 16.8 million m2 – 66% of the total “stock” – spread across 672 locations.

More specifically, shopping centres covered a surface area of more than 11 million m2, with the addition of 175,000 m2 in 2016.

Regarding this year, the Director of Retail Leasing at Cushman & Wakefield in Spain, Cristina Pérez, highlighted the “positive trend” expected in the sector, thanks to the construction of another 100,000 m2 of space, with two centres in Madrid (Sambil and Plaza Río 2) and another one in Barcelona (phase 2 of Glòries).

In terms of retail parks in Spain, the supply now exceeds the European average, with a total surface area of 2.8 million m2.

In terms of high street premises, the head of the area, Robert Travers, explained that it has reached “historical highs”, thanks to the improvement in the economy, growth in tourism and rising consumer confidence.

Moreover, Travers noted that the luxury sector is suffering from a “major” change, following “eight years of euphoria”, due to the effect if terrorism, concerns over the Asian markets and a rise in taxes in China.

In this sense, the Head of High Street confirmed that the growth in luxury stores in Spain is going to be “moderate”.

Cushman & Wakefield’s report also contains information about the boom in e-commerce – which has grown globally by30% since 2007 – and its effect on the real estate sector.

Pérez underlined that it is now necessary “to offer a different social experience” to get “people out of the house” and visiting shopping centres in person.

The Head of Retail Leasing acknowledged that 77% of Spain’s shopping centres “need some kind of improvement”, including modifications to bring them closer to the e-commerce segment.

Original story: Finanzas

Translation: Carmel Drake