Catella Acquires 3 Residential Assets in Pamplona for €26M

7 June 2018 – Eje Prime

Catella Asset Management Iberia (Cami) is on a roll in Spain. The Swedish fund has taken another step forward in its strategy to grow its residential business in Spain with the purchase of three buildings in Pamplona for €26 million, according to explanations provided by sources at the company speaking to Eje Prime.

The latest operation signed by the fund in Spain is the acquisition from a local property developer of three residential buildings for their operation as long-term rental properties. “The vendor is going to continue to take care of the day-to-day management of the buildings”, explain the sources.

Two of the three assets are located in Plaza Puerta de Badostain, in the town of Sarrigueren, located to the west of Pamplona. Those two assets contain 168 homes, 187 parking spaces and 173 storerooms, covering a total constructed surface area of 15,080 m2.

The third building is located on Calle Paseo de los Donantes de Sangre, in the neighbourhood of Ezcaba, in the north of Pamplona. This residence has 67 homes, 69 parking spaces and 67 storerooms, which together span a constructed surface area of 7,100 m2.  The operation has been brokered by the real estate consultancy JLL.

Moreover, Catella has recently signed agreements with developers for the construction of two developments in Madrid containing 362 homes and which will form part of its portfolio in operation in the next 18 months.

The first development, whose delivery is scheduled for December 2018, is located in the expansion area of Villaverde in Madrid. It is a development with 171 homes, garages and storerooms, with a combined constructed surface area of 13,035 m2.

Meanwhile, the second development comprises 191 homes, garages and storerooms, spanning a constructed surface area of 13,800 m2 and located in the south of Madrid, which will be handed over at the beginning of 2020. With these acquisitions, Catella Asset Management Iberia has four residential assets: four in Madrid, one in Barcelona and three in Pamplona.

Roadmap in Spain

This operation forms part of the new roadmap that Catella is going to follow in the Spanish market. The Swedish manager, which is going to focus on its objective of growing its asset portfolio in the residential and office sectors, plans to own up to 1,000 flats for rental by the end of this year, doubling its current figure, which stands at around 400 homes.

Present in Spain since 2015, Catella has signed five purchases in recent years in the residential segment, where it has spent around €85 million. The group has €300 million more to spend to continue growing through purchases in the country.

In addition to the residential business, Catella is also very present in the retail sector, where it has recently undertaken operations, such as the purchase from Axiare of the Planetocio shopping centre in Madrid, alongside AEW. The company closed 2017 with a portfolio of assets under management in Spain worth €200 million.

In addition, through its fund specialising in student housing, Catella European Student Housing Fund, the investment company is backing the star alternative asset in the real estate at the moment.

In 2017, it purchased the La Campana hall of residence in Pamplona and, this year, it is analysing possible new acquisitions in the large capitals such as Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia and Sevilla, but also in another city with a notable presence of university students: Granada.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

British Firm Collegiate Plans its Arrival in Barcelona After Opening Student Halls in Madrid & Valencia

9 January 2018 – Eje Prime

Spain is already a reference country in Europe for investment in student halls, as evidenced by the entry of foreign capital into the domestic market. The latest company to look for returns in this sector is Collegiate. The British firm is searching for an enclave in Barcelona, after opening student halls in Madrid and Valencia. The company has already announced that it plans to make its debut in the Catalan capital “soon”.

Collegiate is a company specialising in the management of student residences with a notable presence in the British Isles, where it owns assets in most of the capital and large cities. In Spain, the firm arrived first in Madrid with a hall of residence in Aravaca with 213 prime private rooms, whilst in Valencia, it entered in the maritime area with 350 rooms.

Both buildings have common areas that are typical for these types of prime assets, including a swimming pool, a fitness room, a cinema and a study area with library. The price per person in the Madrilenian hall ranges from €204 to €238 per week, depending on the features of the room, whilst staying in the building in Valencia costs between €196 and €204 per week.

Currently, Collegiate is embarking on an expansion process across Europe, as evidenced by its upcoming openings in Portugal, in Porto, and in another town with a great university tradition in the neighbouring country, Coimbra, which will be added to the hall of residence it recently opened in Lisbon. In Spain, nevertheless, its next major project is yet to come, given that the company has announced its upcoming arrival in Barcelona, a destination city for students from all over the world.

Investment in student halls amounted to €560 million in 2017 

The commitment from this international company to Spain comes in addition to those that have been made over the last year by a market that is clearly booming. In 2017, investment in student halls grew to €560 million, according to data from the real estate consultancy JLL. The significant growth, which compares to the barely €50 million that was invested in 2016, was driven primarily by transactions known as Erasmus and Rio.

Project Erasmus involved the sale of the portfolio of assets owned by the Resa Group, the largest in the country, to Greystar in an operation that was appraised at around €500 million. As a result of the purchase, the manager now owns 37 assets (33 of which are already operational) in Spain and is supported financially by a joint venture formed by the international investment funds AXA Real Assets and CBRE Global Investment Partners.

Meanwhile, the operation known as Rio involved the British manager GSA (Global Student Accommodation), which acquired Nexo Residencias from Threesixty Developments, a company owned by the fund Oaktree Capital, as part of an investment plan in which it plans to spend €300 million over the next five years. In addition, another recognised player, the investor group Catella, has also set its sights on this alternative investment business in Spain, with the acquisition of La Campana hall of residence in Pamplona.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Jabier Izquierdo)

Translation: Carmel Drake