Europa Capital Invests €140M+ in c.10 Developments in Barcelona

9 May 2018 – Eje Prime

The British fund Europa Capital is continuing its firm commitment to Spain hand in hand with the property developer Bonavista. The group has already invested more than €140 million in the launch of around ten developments in Barcelona, according to Jacinto Roqueta, co-founder of Bonavista, speaking to Eje Prime. In addition, the fund, which still has investor appetite in the country, is continuing to search for opportunities in the Catalan capital, as well as along the Mediterranean arc.

Bonavista was founded by real estate professionals Alex Miquel Molleví, Marcus Donaldson and Jacinto Roqueta in June 2014. “We saw that there was no stable supply of luxury real estate developments in Barcelona and that it was very difficult to find capital to invest”, says Roqueta. The company managed to seduce Europa Capital into joining forces and carrying out its first purchases in the country.

“Since then, Europa Capital has invested more than €140 million in Barcelona buying land, properties to renovate and constructing developments in more than eight projects”, explains Roqueta.

One of the first investments undertaken by Bonavista and Europa Capital in Spain was the purchase of Casa Burés. Not without controversy, the fund acquired the modernist building in December 2014, for which it paid €18.8 million to the La Generalitat, which had purchased it from the Town Hall of Barcelona for €26 million.

“After a lot of hard work to ensure we respected the guidelines for historical buildings and carried out an artisan renovation, most of the building has now been sold, although a few homes are still available”, explains the director. Casa Burés is located on the corner of Calles Girona and Ausiàs March, in a building containing 29 homes, penthouses and lofts measuring between 100 m2 and 500 m2 each. The delivery of the homes, most of which have been acquired by international buyers, will take place at the end of this year.

Since 2010, Europa Capital, which is headquartered in London, has had two high profile shareholders, the Rockefeller and Mitsubishi groups. Since 1995, Europa Capital has invested €6 billion in different real estate projects in seventeen countries across Europe, mostly in Eastern Europe. In 2015, it set its sights on Barcelona, to take advantage of the city’s international profile and the drop in prices in the real estate market caused by the crisis.

After Casa Burés, Bonavista and Europa Capital continued buying new buildings to renovate them. Its purchases included the property located at number 33 Calle Caspe, where the company has already managed to sell and handover the entire development, which comprises 26 homes (…).

But Europa Capital does not only have its focus set on the Catalan capital, it is also working in Madrid. There, the company has teamed up with a firm specialising in renovations and property development Richelieu (founded by Marcus Donaldson, who is also a co-founder of Bonavista) and with which it has invested more than €75 million in the Madrilenian market.

One of Richelieu’s projects in Madrid is located on Calle General Martínez Campos, 19, just a stone’s throw from Paseo de la Castellana, where the company is planning to build luxury homes. The property was acquired last year by Europa Capital and the project will involve an investment of €25 million (…).

Last year, the company also acquired number 16 Calle Madrigal, in Madrid. That new build residential development is located in Colonia Puerta de Hierro and will comprise around twenty homes designed by Bueso-Inchausti & Rein Arquitectos. Europa Capital and Richelieu have invested €50 million in that project.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Knight Frank: Demand Rises For Luxury Housing In Madrid

23 November 2015 – El Mundo

The luxury residential sector in Madrid has now emerged from the crisis, according to the Prime Residential Report from Knight Frank (KF) for the third quarter of 2015. The study points to price growth of 5.2% in the Spanish capital, i.e. above the levels observed in markets such as London and Paris. The average sales period has also decreased to between 3-6 months, down from 10-12 months.

In fact, Madrid is the European city with the second highest rate of price growth YoY in the prime residential segment, where prices have recorded a cumulative decrease of 22% since the beginning of the crisis, according to KF. Thus, Madrid is ranked behind only Monaco (9.4%) in a classification, which is led by Vancouver (20.4%) (in global terms).

Nevertheless, the consultancy firm acknowledges that the level of activity has slowed down since the summer due to the political uncertainty. In this sense, it stresses that if a stable government emerges from the upcoming general election, then the market will grow at a faster pace, given that “investors have money, desire and intent, but are currently waiting to see what will happen”.

According to the report, the areas of Jerónimos and Salamanca have led the recovery, with price rises of 8% and 7%, respectively, for second-hand homes. Next in the ranking are Chamberí (3%); Justicia and Paseo de la Habana (2 %); Viso (1 %) and finally, Castellana, where prices have remained stable.

In terms of new homes, price rises have been more moderate. Salamanca and Chamberí lead the ranking, with price rises of 4%, followed by El Viso (2%). Justicia and Habana have seen decreases of 2% and 4%, respectively, marked by the low level of stock comprising undesirable properties. In general, the most coveted districts are Salamanca, Jerónimos and Chamberí, which account for 70% of the demand and where the most coveted homes have prices that range between €1 million and €2 million.

By type of investor, 70% of the buyers of luxury homes are Spanish, whilst 30% are international, double the rate recorded two years ago. The overseas demand is coming, primarily, from Latin America buyers, who are seeking luxury products in the centre of Madrid and second homes.

According to Ernesto Tarazona, the Director of KF’s Residential and Land department, average prices are expected to grow by between 5-10% and new homes are expected to enter the market leading to a trend in prices that “we are not used to seeing”.

Canalejas will be one of the iconic projects that will shape the near future, says the Director General of KF, Alberto Prieto, who warns that Spanish demand for that product will exceed international demand. The firm, which will be involved in the sale, has also expressed its interest in participating in the Grupo Villar Mir’s equivalent Canalejas project in London, which is being developed in the former war offices of the British capital.

Over the next 18 months, KF expects to see the development of 80,000 m2 of projects in Madrid, such as Lagasca 99 (Juan Bravo, 3); Lamarca on Fernando VI; José Abascal 48 and Antonio Maura, 8. (…).

Original story: El Mundo

Translation: Carmel Drake