6 July 2018 – El Confidencial
Ibero Capital Management, the management firm launched by Walter de Luna and Luis Moreno, both former directors of Sareb and Acciona Inmobiliaria, has just closed the first major alternative financing operation in Spain, for an amount exceeding €35 million, which involves funding to purchase land, repay bank debt and build the project.
Of those €35 million, two thirds will be allocated to the land purchase and to repaying debt, whilst one third – approximately €10 million – will be used for the construction of the project.
The beneficiary is a local property developer in Málaga, which, thanks to this liquidity has been able to acquire three plots located in the Málagan town of Mijas, together with a golf course. It plans to build 145 homes on the land. The plots are not only finalist, the urban planning permissions to be able to start the building work are also very advanced, given that the marketing of the homes will begin immediately, according to explanations provided by Walter de Luna and Luis Moreno, speaking to El Confidencial.
The Ibero CM platform was created by the two directors to facilitate access to alternative financing for property developers and cooperative managers who want to buy land and are unable to obtain bank financing. They have €400 million available to finance developments all over Spain. The money comes from Oak Hill Advisors, one of the largest investment funds in the world, with more than USD 30 billion under management, which has invested more than €1 billion in Spain since 2005, primarily in real estate projects.
Ibero CM has closed this operation in record time, almost two months after announcing its own launch. It currently has several other projects in the pipeline amounting to approximately €100 million, which it hopes to close over the coming weeks and months.
This is the first firm of its kind to be launched in Spain, financing both the capital and debt of property development companies in every phase of the development of their products, including land purchases.
“The financing structure is very flexible since it includes several tranches that finance the acquisition of land, the repayment of bank debt, the payment of taxes and other expenses associated with the transaction and construction of projects (…)”, explain Walter de Luna and Luis Moreno.
“By staying (involved in projects) to the end and sharing in the profits, the financing costs decrease significantly”. And they add that “by sharing in the final profits of the project, the interest rates are not as high as if they were only financing land purchases. And there is not a fixed percentage, given that it depends on the total cost of the constructions that we finance. The greater the cost, the higher the percentage”, say the directors.
For now, Ibero Capital is focusing on finalist land and plots in a very advanced phase of urban planning, and they are centring on the major markets in Levante, Andalucía and Madrid, although they acknowledge that the Madrilenian market “is very expensive and, although we are only looking at the moment, obviously, if we decide to enter, the property developer margin would narrow”. Specifically, the manager is holding conversations with a cooperative manager to finance a project in Madrid. Similarly, they are open to both first and second home projects, whenever the projects are viable.
Unlike the investment funds that have acquired stakes in property developers in recent years, they do not get involved in the management of the companies that they finance. “We are not shareholders in the companies’ share capital, therefore we do not interfere in their decision-making or in their management. We carry out the same controls that any bank would when granting a property developer loan”, they conclude.
Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)
Translation: Carmel Drake