5 December 2017 – Intereconomía
Bankia has let its arm be twisted in the largest real estate operation in Valencia. The legal battle for Torre Iberdrola has been resolved through an out-of-court agreement.
Bankia is going to sell 50% of Torre Iberdrola to Atitlán and withdraw its claims against the sale of the property to the family. The financial institution chaired by José Ignacio Gorigolzarri is thereby allowing Iberdrola to do business with the Valencian Montoro family after divesting the 10% stake that it still held in Oceanic Center.
At the beginning of May, Iberdola completed the sale of the 50% stake that it held in the retail, hotel and office complex Aqua Multiespacio. The operation was closed for a much lower price than initially estimated: €61.5 million compared to €90 million.
The tower is owned by the company Oceanic Center and is home to the Aqua shopping centre and the Valencian headquarters of Iberdrola. The Montoro family has now purchased that 50% stake and has whereby acquired a majority share of the complex since it holds a majority stake in the remaining 50%. Bankia’s stake was a minority and it had been opposed to it. The sale of the 50% stake generated €17 million for Iberdrola.
The Montoro family closed the purchase through the companies Invesmon3 Ziel, Azzofinanz and Blanal Inversores. The operation has been settled for an amount that was 31.66% lower than initially expected. This operation directly affects Bankia and the Ferrando family, which formed part of the 50% that has not been sold. Both opposed the direct purchase by the Montoro family and announced actions to prevent the purchase from materialising. Nevertheless, the Montoro family imposed its majority stake in the company and gave the go-ahead for the operation to be closed.
This war is not new, in fact, it goes a long way back. The trio formed Navisa, a company that owns 50% of the shopping and hotel centre, where the majority of the capital was owned by the Montoro family, which now owns the majority of the complex, leaving the financial institution with a minority stake and without the right to veto new decisions. Bankia’s strategy was that the Montoro family would have a majority stake, but Bankia would increase its weight together with the Ferrando family. Nevertheless, Bankia has definitively disposed of its stake (almost 10% of Navisa), which has passed into the hands of Juan Roig’s son-in-law and his partners in NAU, the Ferrando and Quesada families, according to El Confidencial.
In this way, an out-of-court agreement has been reached with the Montoro family and the legal case has been terminated. It is not the only battle in the courts between Iberdola and Bankia. The power company chaired by Ignacio Sánchez Galán brought a lawsuit against Bankia for its debut on the stock market. There is €70 million at stake, although a judge has already dismissed Iberdrola’s claim; they are now waiting for the appeal ruling.
Original story: Intereconomía
Translation: Carmel Drake