The Quesada Family of Málaga to List Maq Administración Urbanas Socimi on Euronext París

19 November 2019 – The Quesada family, which owns a series of properties on Calle Larios de Málaga, the principal commercial artery of the provincial capital city, has incorporated a socimi that is preparing for a listing on the Euronext Paris. The socimi Maq Administración Urbanas, which owns three buildings, is worth 47.9 million euros, according to the IPO.

The properties are located at the streets Marqués de Larios 5, Salvago 2 and Alameda 11 and are all fully leased.

Original Story: ABC de Sevilla – María Jesús Pereira

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Haya Real Estate Looks to Expand into Italy & Greece to Grow its Business

27 May 2019 – Expansión

Haya Real Estate, the servicer controlled by the US investment fund Cerberus, is looking to grow its business. Following its merger with Divarian (formerly Anida), it is now the second largest servicer in Spain, after Altamira, with 1,200 employees and €47 billion in assets under management.

In order to diversify its portfolio, the servicer led by Carlos Abad (pictured above) is evaluating its expansion into Italy and Greece, two emerging markets in which multiple NPL investment and management opportunities are expected to arise in the short term. That would help alleviate concerns over Haya’s future, which currently depends heavily on the outcome of the servicer’s negotiations with Sareb, whose contract is due to expire in December.

The future of Haya Real Estate has been up in the air since its stock market debut was postponed last year. Cerberus has held its stake in the servicer for six years now and is keen to exit soon given that its typical investment rotation period amounts to five years. Following the postponed IPO, the US giant is now holding preliminary conversations with several other investment funds interested in acquiring its stake, but the price will depend on the servicer’s future with Sareb.

Original story: Expansión (by Rebeca Arroyo)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Cerberus Puts Haya Real Estate up for Sale for c. €1.2bn

15 March 2019 – Eje Prime

Cerberus had been planning to list Haya Real Estate on the stock market but it suspended that operation in light of the political instability in the country, amongst other reasons. Instead, the US fund has decided to put the servicer up for sale.

The asking price is €1.2 billion and the advisor Rothschild has already made contact with possible interested parties. They include DoBank, which acquired Altamira in January for €412 million; the Swedish company Intrum, which purchased 80% of Solvia in December; and the fund manager Centricus.

Haya’s contract with Sareb is due to expire at the end of this year and the bad bank is understood to be considering not renewing the agreement as part of a wider strategic rethink.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

The Villar Mir Family Commissions the Sale of Inmobiliaria Espacio & Fertiberia

12 March 2019 – El Confidencial

The Villar Mir group has decided to clean up its asset portfolio in order to pay off some of its debt and, to this end, has put two companies up for sale: ‘Promociones y Propiedades Inmobiliarias Espacio’ (Priesa), which owns a variety of land and homes, and Fertiberia, the multi-national fertiliser firm.

These two operations form part of the group’s wider reorganisation process, which is being led by the CEO, Javier López Madrid. They will join the partial divestment of Ferroglobe and the possible IPO of OHL, both of which have already sparked great interest in the sector.

The Villar Mir family has entrusted the sale of Inmobiliaria Espacio to Savills Aguirre Newman, which will begin by performing a valuation of the assets. Project Caleido, involving the construction of a 180-metre tall tower, on Paseo de la Castellana, will be excluded from the deal.

Priesa has returned to profits in the last two years, following several years of losses, which forced the majority shareholder to provide a €175 million participation loan as part of a rescue plan. The company’s main appeal lies in its sizeable, high-quality portfolio of land for development, in good locations, which was valued by RICS to be worth €257 million at the end of 2017.

Meanwhile, sources report that Villar Mir has also engaged Lazards to find a buyer for Fertiberia, for which it could receive around €250 million.

Sources close to the operations point out that it is unlikely that all of the deals in the pipeline will go ahead. What is clear is that Villar Mir will have to divest some assets to repay as soon as possible the €365 million that Tyrus lent the group in November last year.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Agustín Marco)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Neinor & Vía Célere Lead the Ranking of Forecast House Deliveries for 2019

28 January 2019 – Cinco Días

Year after year, the new major players in the house construction sector are seeing the numbers in their growth plans increase. During 2019, the largest property developers created since 2015, and some of those reborn from the ashes during this latest upwards cycle, are expected to approach their cruising speed, above all, the listed companies Neinor, Aedas and Metrovacesa, which have been called to lead the residential construction sector together with Vía Célere. Even so, the sector is still very fragmented with lots of small companies.

Neinor Homes and Vía Célere have become the two entities with the largest number of home deliveries this year. In both cases, 2,000 clients will receive the keys to their homes, according to figures provided to Cinco Días by around twenty property developers. In these forecasts, the companies have detailed three concepts for their plans for 2019: homes that they will launch onto the market, homes that they will start work on and forecast deliveries.

Neinor Homes, created in 2015, and led by Juan Velayos (…) expects to start work on 3,000 homes this year, coming close to the cruising speed that it defined during its IPO, and it will start to market another 2,000 units.

Meanwhile, Vía Célere, controlled by the US fund Värde Partners, is in the middle of integrating the assets of Aelca, the other property developer owned by Värde, which has now emptied its portfolio (…). It is the only one of the large players that is not yet listed on the stock market; its plans in that regard were postponed last year.

The listed firm Aedas, also created in 2017 with land from another US fund, in that case, Castlelake, is also perceiving an upwards turn in its numbers. This year, it will hand over 1,055 homes, start marketing 2,500 homes and start building 3,000 homes, just two years after first appearing on the stage, with David Martínez as its CEO.

Meanwhile, Metrovacesa, the other large listed company, controlled by Santander (and in which BBVA holds a minority stake), clearly leads the business plans, with up to 4,500 homes to be newly marketed and whose construction will be launched. This one-hundred-year-old real estate company, which was cleaned up by the banks following the crisis, launched its new project in 2017 with Jorge Pérez de Leza, from Grupo Lar, as the CEO.

In terms of those entities backed by funds, the rescued firm Habitat also stands out, reactivated last year by Bain Capital, and which is planning to market 3,000 homes this year. Similarly, Cerberus took control of Inmoglacier in 2017 (…). That firm declined to provide its forecasts to this newspaper, but it is also set to play a significant role, given that it has become one of the real estate arms of the US fund, one of the most active in the purchase of assets from the banks and which also owns Haya Real Estate as its servicer.

The group of twenty-odd companies consulted will hand over almost 16,000 homes this year, will start work on 34,000 units and will begin marketing another 30,000 properties. These figures reflect the enormous fragmentation in the sector, which in the last 12 months has started 103,000 homes in total, according to figures from the Ministry of Development as at October 2018.

Small specialist property developers still carry a lot of weight, unlike in other countries where large players exist. Moreover, even though the rate of residential construction has taken off since 2014, it is still well below the peak of 2006 when 865,000 building permits were granted.

In terms of the new players also boosted by the international funds, they include other developers with a high rate of house sales: AQ Acentor (owned by the German fund Aquila), which is going to put 1,700 homes up for sale; Kronos Homes (backed by several European and US investors), which will market another 1,600 homes; and ASG Homes (backed by the British firm ActivumSG), which plans to add another 1,000 homes.

In terms of the survivors of the crisis, Amenabar stands out, the Gipuzkoan company, which expects to start work on 3,608 homes next year and to hand over 1,245 units. Another of the stalwarts is the Madrilenian firm Pryconsa, owned by the Colomer family, which has already reached a high number in terms of house starts: 1,285. In more modest terms, other important firms include the Basque entity Inbisa and the new entity Áurea Homes, the residential subsidiary of the Navarran construction group ACR (…).

Original story: Cinco Días (by Alfonso Simón Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Socimi Árima Buys 4 Office Buildings in Madrid for €110M

27 December 2018 – La Vanguardia

The Socimi Árima has purchased its first four office buildings in Madrid for €110 million, operations that it has carried out just two months after making its stock market debut in October without any real estate assets in its portfolio.

In this operation, the firm promoted by the former CEO of Axiare, Luis López de Herrera-Oria, has invested the c. €100 million that it raised from its stock market debut and “is whereby starting its journey”.

The four assets purchased comprise a combined surface area of around 27,000 m2, as well as 460 parking spaces, and are located in the business centre district and northeast of the capital.

The firm, which is going to invest €16.7 million to improve the properties, is convinced that they have “great potential for appreciation”.

Specifically, Árima has purchased one building on Calle María de Molina on the corner with Príncipe de Vergara, and another one on the intersection of Paseo de la Habana with Avenida de Alfonso XIII, for €31 million in total.

Moreover, the Socimi has signed a commitment to acquire another two office buildings, located in the northeast of Madrid, for €63 million, which will materialise in January 2019.

With these two operations, Árima is purchasing its first buildings after it made its stock market debut without any assets in October and through which it raised €100 million, a third of the €300 million initially planned.

“With the purchase of these assets, Árima is reaffirming its business plan presented during its IPO and the good investment opportunities that the Spanish real estate market offers”, said the CEO of the firm, Luis López de Herrera-Oria, in a statement.

Original story: La Vanguardia 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Ibercaja Finalises the Sale of a €600M Real Estate Portfolio

8 December 2018 – El Periódico de Aragón

Ibercaja is continuing to take steps to best position itself ahead of its stock market debut, which is scheduled for next spring. The Aragon-based bank wants to divest more real estate assets before the end of the year to clean up its balance sheet and improve profitability, an objective that it expects will materialise in the coming weeks with the sale of a portfolio of problem assets worth around €600 million, according to confirmation provided by the entity yesterday to this newspaper. To carry out this operation, which is called Project Cierzo, it has engaged the investment bank Alantra, which is finalising the negotiations to find a buyer.

The move by Ibercaja follows the widespread practice across the whole Spanish financial sector and forms part of its strategic plan for 2018-2020, whose goals include the aim of reducing its toxic property assets by half (doubtful and foreclosed) with the mixed sale of around €2 billion in land and housing. That would help to improve efficiency, by bringing it below 55%, and would make the entity more attractive for future investors.

During the period 2015-2017, the bank led by Víctor Iglesias (pictured above, left) managed to clean up €1.6 billion. At the end of the third quarter of 2018, the volume of problem assets amounted to €3.9 billion, which represented a decrease of 10.1% (€437 million) with respect to the same period last year and of 7.3% (€304 million) compared to the end of 2017 (€4.2 billion), according to the figures provided by the entity at the beginning of November. Based on those numbers, Project Cierzo – which was revealed by Voz Pópuli – would represent a significant step towards the objective of cutting the entity’s real estate balance in half by 2020, as there would be around €1 billion left to achieve that goal.

A month ago, Ibercaja announced that it had engaged the bank Rothschild, as an independent advisor for its stock market debut, a step that European legislation requires it to take before the end of 2020. Currently, the Aragon-based bank is controlled by the Fundación Ibercaja, which owns 87.8% of its share capital, a stake that must be reduced to below 50% to avoid a fine. The other shareholders are the foundations of three former savings banks –CAI, 4.85%; Badajoz, 3.9%; and Círculo de Burgos, 3.45%– which it absorbed when it purchased the Caja3 group in 2013.

The entity is working to ensure that its valuation is as high as possible, and so the specific date for the IPO will depend on the evolution of the market. Nevertheless, it is most likely that it will make the leap during the second quarter of 2019.

Original story: El Periódico de Aragón (by J. H. P.)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Haya Reactivates its IPO After Protecting its Mega-Contract with Sareb

8 November 2018 – Cinco Días

One of the IPOs scheduled for this year is going to be executed next year, most likely in the window that will launch in May. The bane that was weighing down on Haya Real Estate, the end of its mega-contract with Sareb, has almost been lifted. The contract was signed in January 2015 and expires in December 2019, but financial sources are now certain that it is going to be renewed. Nevertheless, Sareb is likely to pay lower commissions to the real estate asset manager (servicer, in the jargon). The appraisal value of the firm ahead of its stock market debut amounts to around €1.2 billion.

Last May, Sareb put assets worth around €23.5 billion up for sale, comprising property developer loans and real estate assets. They accounted for 60.6% of the €38.8 billion that Haya had at the end of June.

That caused investors to panic about their bonds, whose yield soared to 8.5% (refer to the graph) and put in doubt Haya’s stock market debut this year, as Cinco Días published on 4 June. Now, the yield on that debt amounts to less than 7%. Haya has engaged Rothschild as its chief IPO advisor and Citi and JP Morgan as the coordinators.

But last summer, the so-called bad bank decided to suspend that operation and opt, in all cases, for smaller sales. Thus, the firm controlled by Cerberus was going to manage those assets until the end of the year. The sources consulted indicate that, after the divestment was ruled out, the negotiations between Sareb and Haya progressed at a good pace and the likelihood of the contract being extended now exceeds 90%. Barring a last-minute change of heart, the two entities will announce the extension of the agreement before 30 June 2019. Nevertheless, a spokesperson for Sareb clarified that a decision has not yet been taken. A spokesperson for Haya declined to comment on the information.

The final discussion points relate to the commission that Sareb is going to have to pay Haya. By contrast, the servicer is not going to pay any upfront payments, like it did in at the start of the current contract, for €235 million.

The other question that must be resolved in parallel to the stock market debut is that of a possible merger. Sabadell has put its asset manager, Solvia, up for sale for around €400 million, and Cerberus (Haya’s main shareholder) is the main interested party. In fact, Cerberus has already acquired 80% of Sabadell’s real estate assets with a book value of €9.1 billion. Santander and Apollo are also in the process of selling Altamira, and Haya is exploring possible business opportunities outside of Spain.

In addition to Sareb’s assets, Haya Real Estate is also likely to manage the majority of the assets that BBVA has sold to Cerberus for around €4 billion (with a book value of around €13 billion). It has also already been agreed that Haya Real Estate will manage the future flows of toxic property from BBBA. Haya will also add the so-called Ágora portfolio to its assets, comprising €650 million purchased by Cerberus from CaixaBank.

Until the amount of assets managed is increased, it already has a Bankia portfolio amounting to €5.5 billion under management, thanks to a contract signed in May, as well as portfolios from Cajamar (€5.9 billion), Liberbank (€2.9 billion) and other firms (€1 billion). Between January and June, Haya recorded revenues of €130.2 million, of which €64.9 million was converted into EBITDA. On Thursday 15 November, the firm will publish its accounts to the end of September.

Original story: Cinco Días 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Aedas Homes has a Landbank Covering 4+ years of Visibility

8 October 2018 – Nasdaq

Aedas Homes, a leading property developer in the new real estate cycle in Spain, already has enough land in its portfolio to cover deliveries until 2022, as well as a significant part of 2023, thereby confirming the delivery targets set out in its IPO prospectus. The company’s landbank (close to 90% is classified as ready-to-build) will allow it to develop up to 14,521 homes in Spain’s key residential markets and is considered by analysts to be the best in the country.

So far in 2018, the publicly traded company, with CEO David Martínez at the helm, has completed the construction of 222 homes scheduled for delivery this year, 190 of which have already been sold.  As of August 31, the company had 6,287 active units, 55% more than in December 2017, and of those, 1,623 were already under construction. These figures reflect the strength of the property developer’s operating capacity during its first year.

In 2019, the developer plans to deliver almost five times as many homes, with a delivery target of 1,055 residential units; 1,071 homes are currently under construction and 761 have been sold. In 2020, Aedas Homes will deliver 1,986 homes and reach its cruising speed in terms of launches (3,000). The plan for 2021 is to deliver 2,438 homes and begin 2,471 new projects. 2022 will mark the moment when the developer reaches its cruising speed in terms of deliveries, with plans to put 3,063 homes in the hands of customers and launch another 3,000. In 2023, the number of homes being delivered will reach 3,326.

Martínez highlighted the company’s strict compliance with the goals announced at its IPO, noting that the company returned a profit one year ahead of schedule. Specifically, the property developer earned €3.7 million during the first half of 2018, making it the first of the new large developers in Spain to become profitable, and doing so only eight months after being listed on the Madrid stock market.

“We designed a realistic business plan, meaning that we will reach our targets in the coming years: by 2020, for example, we will have delivered more than 3,200 homes. Right now, we have almost 6,300 active units across 117 developments which gives us the visibility we need in terms of our objectives,” Martínez explained.

About Aedas Homes

The property developer Aedas Homes became a listed company on 20 October 2017 in Madrid, with a market capitalization of over €1.5 billion. Aedas is an industry leader at the national level and aims to play an important role in the new cycle of the Spanish real estate sector, which must be marked by professionalism and an adherence to rigorous standards.

Aedas Homes has a fully permitted residential landbank with more than 1.5 million buildable square metres (the highest quality landbank in Spain, according to analysts). This will permit the development of 14,500 residential units in the key markets, and their surrounding areas (both in terms of real estate and finance) where Aedas operates: the Centre, Cataluña, the East & Mallorca, Andalucía and the Costa del Sol.

Original story: Nasdaq 

Edited by: Carmel Drake

Sabadell Acknowledges to Goldmans that it is planning to Sell Solvia

1 October 2018 – Bolsamania

The sale of Solvia is on the table. Or, at least, that is what Sabadell has said to Goldman Sachs. Representatives from the two entities held a meeting last week in which Sabadell reiterated its forecast that it would save €150 million per year from the sale of its doubtful assets, including the sale of the servicer.

“The company reiterated its aim to save €150 million per year from the sale of its doubtful exposure, which it is hoped will offset the negative dynamics in the United Kingdom”, said the US entity in a report drafted after the meeting with Sabadell and with other entities, which was published last week.

The document also indicates that “the managers (of Sabadell) highlighted that this aim assumes the sale of Solvia”. The US entity is considering two scenarios, both the sale of Solvia and its continuation within the Banco Sabadell group. According to explanations from Goldman Sachs, the potential sale of the servicer could be good for the bank’s capital and would not dilute its profits.

Alternatively, if the company decides to hold onto Solvia, the entity’s profits would be higher than forecast given that Sabadell would continue to receive the profits of €40 million that Solvia contributes to it, indicates Goldman Sachs in its report.

A spokesman for the entity explains that, in any case, Solvia has never been a core business for Sabadell, in other words, it has never formed part of its main focus. On occasion, in fact, the bank’s CEO, Jaime Guardiola, has explained that “its business” is banking and not real estate. In any case, the spokesperson indicates that the day that a good opportunity presents itself, the bank will assign Solvia “a valuation”.

Sale or stock market debut

The sale is one of the possibilities that Sabadell is considering for Solvia, but it is not the only one. Sources in the sector consulted by Bolsamanía explain that the bank has already received some offers for the real estate asset management company, although it has not ruled out any of them yet.

Another option that the entity would have if it decides to divest the servicer would be to list it on the stock market, a possibility that the market has speculated about on several occasions over the last few years. Nevertheless, the same spokesperson for Sabadell explained that currently there is more “appetite” to buy the “servicer” than to invest in it in the event that it were to debut on the stock market.

In any case, the only fixed plans for Solvia, for the time being, are to remain under the ownership of Sabadell, given that the company is responsible for exclusively managing the assets that the bank is going to transfer to Cerberus Capital Management following its agreement in the summer.

Sabadell will transfer the majority of its real estate exposure to that fund, comprising assets with a combined gross book value of around €9.1 billion (€3.9 billion net). The operation is structured around the sale of the Challenger and Coliseum portfolios to several newly-created companies, which the fund will control (80%) and in which the bank will own the remaining stake (20%).

The last servicer

Solvia is the last bank servicer that is still owned by the entity that created it. Although Sabadell has transferred most of its property to Cerberus, it has held onto its servicer, unlike the other large banks, which have transferred their asset management companies to the different funds to which they have agreed to sell the assets managed (…).

Sabadell launched Solvia Gestión Inmobiliaria ten years ago, in 2008, and retains ownership over it today, with a workforce comprising around 800 employees and with assets under management of more than €30 billion, as well as €3.2 billion in loans managed.

Original story: Bolsamania (by Elena Lozano)

Translation: Carmel Drake