Conren to Build 108 Homes on the Site of Hotusa’s Failed Luxury Hotel in Barcelona

The fund manager has purchased a plot on Paseo de Sant Joan where the Hotusa chain had been planning to build a five-star hotel.

The real estate manager Conren Tramway has acquired a plot of land located at the intersection of Paseo de Sant Joan and Avenida Vilanova, in the Eixample district of Barcelona, next to Arco del Triunfo metro station.

For more than a decade, the land has belonged to the Hotusa hotel group, which had planned to build a unique luxury hotel on the site. However, first, the refurbishment and expansion of the nearby metro station, and then the approval of the hotel moratorium launched by the city’s mayor Ada Colau when she arrived at the town hall (which prevents the opening of new hotels in the city centre) put paid to those plans. As such, the hotel group has now decided to sell the plot.

The Reuben Brothers Buy 250 Hectares Next to the San Juan Reservoir to Build 650 Homes

The former owners of Santander’s Ciudad Financiera have acquired 250 hectares in the Madrilenian municipality of San Martín de Iglesias to build homes and a hotel.

The Reuben brothers, one of the wealthiest families in the United Kingdom, have acquired 650 hectares of land next to the San Juan reservoir, in the Madrilenian town of San Martín de Iglesias. On those plots, the Reubens plan to build a complex comprising 650 homes plus a hotel spanning 7,350 square metres.

Situated in the area known as Canto Redondo, the acquired land is located in an area that is already home to several luxury housing estates, which serve as refuges for wealthy families living in Madrid. Specifically, the land borders two and a half kilometres of the coast of the San Juan Reservoir, the only navigable motor and sailing reservoir in the Community of Madrid. It is also home to the Virgen de la Nueva freshwater beach, the first in the region to be awarded a blue flag.

Demand for Upsizing Remains Stable and Interest in Detached Houses Rises

Although requests for information about new build homes fell by 23% between 15 March and 30 April, sources at Foro Consultores highlight that the decrease is lower than they would have expected.

Although requests for information about new build homes fell by 23% between 15 March and 30 April, compared to the previous 1.5 month period from 1 February to 15 March, sources at the firm Foro Consultores highlight that the decline is lower than they would have expected, and that information about new build products is still being sought.

What are people looking for?

Over the last month and a half, the type of home demanded has been similar to during the previous comparable period. In other words, “around 60% of people make enquiries about 3-bedroom homes, and in those cases, they are looking to upsize. Approximately 25% ask about 2-bedroom units; they are typically first-time buyers. But what has changed is that they are more interested in flats with free spaces: penthouses, ground floor properties with a garden in the case of multi-family houses. More people are also asking for information about housing developments (villas)”, explain the sources at Foro.

More than 300 Projects and 9,275 Homes under Construction: the New Home Market in País Vasco

The País Vasco was ranked fifth in the list of regions with the most new homes under construction last month when building activity was ordered to cease. That activity has resumed this week.

At the end of March, when the Spanish Executive ordered the cessation of all non-essential economic activity, there were 4,809 developments and 131,471 homes under construction across Spain. Of that figure, the País Vasco was ranked fifth in the list of regions with the most new homes under construction on that date, with a total of 309 projects and 9,275 homes, according to data compiled by the Brainsre Big Data real estate platform.

Of the more than 9,200 new homes that were being built in the region, 48% correspond to major developments comprising more than 50 units, specifically, a total of 49 projects and 4,467 units.

Of the 9,275 new build homes under construction in the País Vasco, more than half were started in 2019, representing 53% of the total, equivalent to 4,908 units. Meanwhile, work began on 35% of the homes in 2018 and on the remaining 12%, or 1,163 units, during the first three months of this year.

The stoppage caused by Covid-19, which was in force for 14 days, has put some of the delivery deadlines set by the property developers at risk. In fact, 40% of the homes under construction were expected to be completed this year, equivalent to almost 3,700 units. “That percentage will certainly decrease in favour of 2021. A total of 340 homes distributed across 15 sites in the País Vasco were scheduled for completion during April 2020. It is looking increasingly unlikely that these, and many others, will be handing over the keys on time” explains Antonio Ramudo, Brainsre Data Scientist. Likewise, the development of 4,665 homes was scheduled to be completed next year and almost 920 in 2022.

By type, 71% of the homes on standby are made up of multi-family homes, which correspond to more than 6,580 units. Meanwhile, 4% corresponds to single-family homes and 21% to social housing properties.

Vizcaya, the region worst affected by the shutdown

Of the more than 9,270 new-build homes in País Vasco, Vizcaya is the worst affected province since 53% of the total supply is located there, equivalent to more than 4,950 homes and 134 developments. Meanwhile, Guipúzcoa is home to 33% of the supply with more than 3,070 homes and Álava to 13% with 1,247 units.

The developments are concentrated in and around the provincial capitals. The Greater Bilbao area is home to 3,790 units across 79 developments, and if we take into account “the adjoining municipalities that make up the larger metropolitan area, that figure rises to 4,450 new homes, whose construction has been suspended for two weeks due to Covid-19,” says Ramudo.

In second place is Donostia and its metropolitan area with almost 1,400 homes, although the province has a lower concentration of units around the capital. In this sense, there is a significant supply in municipalities such as Zarautz, with 371 homes across six developments and Irún, with 251 units across ten sites.

As for the capital, there are 836 homes under construction in Vitoria. And Laudio is also worth noting in the province, with 212 units. up to 71 of País Vasco’s 251 municipalities (27% of the total) have had new residential construction projects suspended.

Neinor and Amenabar, the worst affected by the shutdown

By property developer, the companies Neinor Homes and Amenabar, both with headquarters in the País Vasco, are the entities the most new homes in their portfolios, with 915 and 769 units in progress, respectively. However, it is worth mentioning some of the smaller scale property developers, which have also seen the suspension of significant construction volumes, such as the Arrasate group, with 570 homes; Sukia, with 456 units and Jaureguizar, with 455.

The third most affected property developer in the region is the Basque Government itself, which, through Visesa, a public company for the promotion of public housing, had 773 units paralysed. It is also worth highlighting the fact that the ten property developers with the highest volume of homes under construction in the País Vasco are all Basque, something that is not repeated in any other autonomous region in the country.

The most high-profile building project affected in the País Vasco is Bolueta Homes, promoted by Neinor, which comprises 328 units. Located in the municipality of Bilbao, opposite the estuary, work began on its development in 2019. In addition, the same firm has been working on 122 units in Leioa since last year under the name Rivera Homes.

Meanwhile, Amenabar is working on three developments, each comprising more than 100 units. Two of them are located in the Greater Bilbao area: one is phase 3 of Ibai Barria next to the Barakaldo River, comprising 120 units, and another comprises a 112-unit protected home development in Bilbao. The third project is also a sheltered housing initiative, comprising 120 units, in Zarautz, which has an estimated completion date of September 2020.

On the other hand, the regional government has concentrated its current development activity in the Greater Bilbao area, where it has 629 units under construction. One of its developments in Barakaldo, comprising 72 units, had an expected completion date of April this year.

Neinor Reports Profits of €90M, Exceeding its Own Forecast by 30%

9 January 2020 – El Confidencial

Nine months after issuing a profit warning, announcing a new roadmap and appointing a new CEO (Borja García-Egotxeaga (pictured below)), Neinor has reported profits of €90 million, up by 30% compared to the revised forecasts of €70 million.

The property developer handed over 1,269 finished homes last year, within its forecast range of between 1,200 and 1,700, and has another 200 ready to hand over this year. It plans to hand over half of those this month (January) and the rest during the course of the year, depending on its margins.

2020 is going to be a critical year given the looming change in the economic cycle, with stabilisation expected in terms of sales and prices. In 2018, prices rose by 8%; in 2019, they increased by 6-7%; and in 2020, the firm’s objective is to sell 1,700 homes and achieve a price increase of 3.5-4%. Thanks to these rises, the group’s margin amounted to 30% at the end of 2019.

By contrast, Neinor has not managed to fulfil its land purchase plan to date, although it expects to achieve its ambitious forecasts for 2020 when it aims to invest €110 million in total.

The property developer’s two largest shareholders, Orion (28%) and Adar are both keen to support the growth of the company and benefit from the consequent recovery of its share price.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Vivenio Invests €90M in the Purchase of 2 Buildings in Madrid

10 June 2019 – Eje Prime

Vivenio has purchased two buildings in Madrid from a Madrilenian family office for more than €90 million.

The Socimi owned by the Dutch fund APG and Renta Corporación has acquired one building located on Avenida San Luis, comprising 140 homes and 18 premises and another on Calle Hermosilla, with 80 homes and two premises.

Together, the two properties span a surface area of more than 21,500 m2.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation/Summary: Eje Prime

ARC Homes Invests €14M in a New Development in Santa Coloma de Gramanet

3 June 2019 – La Vanguardia

The property developer ARC Homes is going to invest €14 million in the construction of a new housing development in Santa Coloma de Gramanet (Barcelona).

At its current investment pace, ARC expects to achieve a turnover of €85 million by 2020. The property developer is currently looking for new locations for development in Cataluña, the País Vasco, Navarra, La Rioja, Madrid, Valladolid, Valencia and Ibiza.

Original story: La Vanguardia 

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Moonlake Capital Launches a Vehicle to Invest €600M in NPLs

27 May 2019 – Eje Prime

Moonlake Capital is going to launch a vehicle to invest €600 million in large portfolios of non-performing loans in Madrid, Barcelona, the Costa del Sol, the Balearic Islands, Valencia and Sevilla.

The new vehicle will operate as a servicer for the fund and so will manage and divest the portfolio of properties that the banks were left with after their owners were unable to keep up the repayments on their mortgages.

As such, the investment group created in 2016 and headquartered in Madrid will enter the market to compete with the likes of Servihabitat, Altamira, Solvia and Haya Real Estate, amongst others.

In parallel, Moonlake is also planning to create a joint venture with an as yet unidentified investor to develop a 2.5 million m2 project in Málaga’s technology park, involving the construction of 5,000 homes, 110,000 m2 of industrial warehouses and 30,000 m2 of commercial premises.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Marta Casado Pla)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Apollo Submits an Offer for El Corte Inglés’s Entire Real Estate Portfolio

23 May 2019 – Eje Prime

According to financial sources, in April, the fund Apollo Global Management submitted a bid for the whole real estate portfolio that El Corte Inglés has had on the market since the beginning of the year. However, the offer did not convince the management team of the department stores.

Since then, the ECI group has opened up the possibility of allowing interested parties to bid for part of the portfolio so as to maximise the value of the properties. However, the risk with that option is that some properties will end up being left unsold.

With the deadline for bids closing today, nothing is being ruled out. In fact, Apollo could still win if it was willing to increase its offer.

The portfolio contains 95 assets and includes shopping centres, offices and other types of assets such as parking lots, land and homes.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Aedas Reaches an Agreement with Castlelake to Buy Non-Finalist Plots

20 May 2019 – El Confidencial

Aedas Homes has reached an agreement with its main shareholder, the US fund Castlelake, to ensure its supply of long-term land, without having to make any major investments in the short-term.

Specifically, the property developer and the fund will create ad hoc companies for each non-finalist plot in which they decide to invest, whereby Aedas will take a 10% stake and will reserve the right to buy up to 25% of the homes built on each one of the sites.

Aedas’s team will be responsible for managing the vehicles, processing the urban planning formalities and obtaining the finalist land status. The company has already identified six plots in Madrid, Valencia and Sevilla, on which more than 9,200 homes could be built.

It will take between 4 and 5 years to transform those plots into finalist sites and the idea is that Aedas will build at least 2,500 of the homes permitted, with the remainder being sold for development to other property developers.

This strategy will ensure that Aedas has a supply of finalist land over the medium and long-term at affordable prices.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake