Värde Has Invested €800M In Spain’s RE Sector Since 2013

1 March 2017 – Eje Prime

Värde’s latest acquisition, Vía Célere, is going to be incorporated into the plans that the group has for Dospuntos, through which it intends to invest €2,000 million over the next six years, buying up land and building homes.

The US firm Värde Partners has set itself the goal of revolutionising the real estate business in Spain. Following its purchase of the real estate property developer Vía Célere earlier this week, the company has now invested more than €800 million in the real estate business in Spain. Since its arrival in the country in 2013, the fund has closed multiple operations, such as the purchase of Banco Popular’s real estate fund and the acquisition of assets in Madrid and Barcelona. Now, Värde Partners is taking another step forward in its objective to redraw the property developer map in Spain.

Founded in 1993 and headquartered in Minneapolis (USA), Värde Partners invests its capital all over the world, through multiple strategies. (…). The group works with a wide range of assets and regional headquarters in Minneapolis, London and Singapore. It also has secondary offices in other cities around the world, including Barcelona.

Värde Partners is an alternative investment fund manager, with more than $10,000 million in assets under management and more than $50,000 million invested around the world. (…).

In December 2012, the investment fund fired the starting gun on its investments in Spain by joining forces with Anchorage to formalise the purchase of five buildings in Madrid and Barcelona for €100 million. Under the name Operation Copernicus, this package of assets used to belong to the former German bank Eurohypo, but was put up for sale in conjunction with the real estate company Monteverde. (…).

Then, during 2013, on its path to seek out good opportunities in the real estate business in Spain, Värde Partners seduced Banco Popular into the purchase of Aliseda for €815 million, together with Kennedy Wilson. The alliance formed by the two groups competed with lower offers from other groups such as Fortress, Willbur Ross and Lone Star.

After two years organising its business portfolio in Spain, Värde Partners finally took control of San José Desarrollos Inmobiliarios, where it already owned almost 25%. The US fund purchased Banco Popular’s 25% stake for €90 million, which allowed it to take ownership of 51% of that firm’s share capital.

From its newfound position of power, Värde Partners immediately carried out a €60 million capital increase, a move aimed at propping up the company and laying the foundations necessary to start building homes. In this way, Värde Partners prepared the basis of what would later become Dospuntos.

More recently, Värde has closed its last two purchases in Spain just a few months apart. In 2016, the group acquired the property developer Aelca from the Avintia group for €50 million. Meanwhile, it announced on Monday, that it is going to take control of Vía Célere for €90 million.

In this way, Vía Célere will form part of the plans that the group has for Dospuntos, through which it intends to invest €2,000 million over the next six years (…). The company already owns a vast land bank on which it plans to build more than 7,000 homes. In addition, the company wants to continue expanding its stock of land. In this way, its business plan for 2016-2021 includes new acquisitions with the aim of creating “the best land portfolio in Spain”.

Following its purchase of Vía Célere, Värde will integrate this real estate company into Dospuntos, which will operate under the Vía Célere trading name and which will have a land portfolio measuring more than 1 million m2. (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by C. Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Värde Finalises Its Purchase Of Residential Property Developer Aelca

9 May 2016 – El Confidencial

Värde Partners is getting ready to become the largest player in the property development business in Spain. After acquiring 51% of Aliseda, the real estate arm of Banco Popular; having purchased San José Desarrollas, the residential branch of the Galician construction company…and in the middle of negotiations to buy a share of La Finca, the US fund is now one step away from another big trophy.

According to three sources, Värde has made the best offer to acquire Aelca, the property developer that the Avintia Group has put on the market and in which a large group of foreign funds have expressed interest. Amongst them, Castlelake and Värde stand out, although the latter is the only one that has reached an agreement in principle.

With the caution that must be maintained until the operation is definitively closed, which could happen before the end of the month, Värde is taking another step forwards in its strategy to become one of the largest real estate groups in Spain. It has been committed to the market since the darkest days of the crisis, as it demonstrated four years ago, when it joined forces with Anchorage to purchase five premium buildings in Madrid and Barcelona, which previously belonged to Monteverde.

A year later, came the acquisition of Aliseda for €815 million, a deal that allowed it to take over the management of mortgage loans with a net value of €9,350 million and foreclosed assets worth another €6,500 million. In addition, that purchase, which it undertook together with Kennedy Wilson, helped to heal the wound opened with CX Inmobiliaria, the platform owned by Catalunya Caixa, with which it had reached an agreement for almost €30 million, but which broke down at the last minute.

The story goes on, because thanks to the acquisition of San José Desarrollos alone, Värde Partners expects to construct 1,500 homes across Spain in the short term, numbers that will increased even further if it manages to acquire Aelca, a young property developer, which has great appeal thanks to its strong presence in areas where the residential sector is recovering the most in Madrid, such as Aravaca, Boadilla del Monte and the Madrilenian neighbourhood of Las Tablas.

Värde’s commitment to the real estate business has led it to invest more than €1,000 million in the acquisition of Aliseda and San José Desarrollos alone, two sides of the same coin, given that as well as managing and selling the assets of the company that it shares with Popular, the fund is particularly interested in fully benefitting from the expected recovery in the residential market through its own property developer, as it is showing with its frenetic activity in these businesses.

By contrast, Värde is exiting its positions in the shopping centre segment, as it demonstrated in February with the sale of the Mallorcan Festival Park outlet, and in July 2015, with the sale to Lar of three large retail outlets in the Parque Comercial Galeria de Pamplona.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Alicia Koplowitz Buys an Office Tower in Barcelona From Bankrupt Monteverde

11/07/2014 – Vozpopuli

The biggest opportunities on the Spanish real estate market are not only snapped up by vulture funds and foreign investorsAlicia Koplowitz, through her investment vehicle Omega Capital, has just bought an iconic office building in Barcelona known as Torre Tarragona, from now insolvent Grupo Inmobiliario Monteverde.

Monteverde carried out several transactions (e.g. it bought the old Barcelona headquarters of Banesto and three units located on Madrid´s Plaza de España Square purchased from Renta Corporación for €110 million) at the beginning of the last decade and could not redeem the expiring loans.

The situation pushed the real estate group towards bargain asset auctions, at once spotted by the market experts.

The 27.000 square meter property which rises 19 floors up was bought in 2006 by Grupo Inmobiliario Monteverde from a property managing branch of Credit Suisse for around 90 million euros.

In a desperate step to dodge the total bankruptcy when the recession hit, the company tried to sell the properties in Madrid, put together in the “Copernicus” portfolio, to Colonial. However, the operation have not materialized due to Colonial´s own solvency troubles.

The three buildings have fallen in hands of British funds, while the property in Barcelona was acquired by Inditex belonging to Amancio Ortega. Finally, the Torre Tarragona tower was purchased by Omega.


Original article: Vozpopuli (by Raul Pozo)

Translation: AURA REE