Blackstone Finalises the Purchase of Torre Tarragona from UBS

5 June 2019 – Cinco Días

The US fund Blackstone is negotiating the purchase of Torre Tarragona in Barcelona from UBS, according to several sources in the sector. The deal looks set to become the third major operation in the city’s office market this year after Naturgy sold its headquarters to Colonial and Telefónica sold its Diagonal 00 property to Emperador.

UBS Global Asset Management acquired Torre Tarragona in 2015 for €72 million from Omega Capital, the family office owed by Alicia Koplowitz. Now, having invested €10 million in a comprehensive renovation, the Swiss bank is hoping to sell the property for between €100 million and €110 million.

Torre Tarragona is located close to the Sants train station in the Catalan capital and spans a surface area of 18,150m2 spread over 19 floors. It has 250 parking spaces and its main tenant is Pepsico, together with other companies, such as the technological firm Acens (a subsidiary of Telefónica), Quercus and the laboratory Gentic.

Original story: Cinco Días (by Alfonso Simón Ruiz)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Grosvenor Purchases the MB One Building in Madrid for €80M

15 April 2019 – Eje Prime

Grosvenor has reached an agreement with Blackstone to acquire the MB One building, known for housing Citi’s headquarters, in La Moraleja (Madrid) for €80 million.

The US fund currently owns the property through Chameleon, a company that has put all of its assets up for sale.

MB One has a surface area of 22,129 m2, distributed over four modules and five storeys.

This represents Grosvenor’s return to the office market and accompanies its activity in the luxury residential market in Spain, where it plans to invest €200 million in projects in the neighbourhoods of Salamanca and Chamberí.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

The Lawyers’ Mutual Society Buys Paseo de la Habana, 3 for €23.4M

3 April 2019 – El Confidencial

Grupo Millenium has sold an office building on Paseo de la Habana, 3, in Madrid to the Mutualidad de la Abogacía (Lawyers’ Mutual Society) for €23.4 million. In fact, the deal was signed in April 2018, but has only just come to light after the Mutualidad published its annual accounts for last year.

The building has been completely renovated and is leased in its entirety to Gunni & Trentino, the Spanish company specialising in high-end interior decoration, which houses its headquarters there. The property is located in a prime area, just 100m from Paseo de la Castellana and Nuevos Ministerios, and comprises 3,000 m2 distributed over five storeys.

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Saint Croix Buys an Office Building in Madrid for €24M

31 January 2019 – Diario Vasco

The Socimi Saint Croix Holding has acquired an office building located on Calle Juan Ignacio Luca de Tena 17 in Madrid for €23.95 million.

The price of the building, which also includes 166 parking spaces, has been paid in part with two commercial premises owned by the company whose value amounts to €3.5 million, according to the Spanish National Securities Market Commission (CNMV).

Specifically, the commercial premises are located on Calle Caleruega 66, 68 and 70 as well as on Calle Rutilo 21, 23 and 25, both in Madrid.

In addition, the company has paid €20,385,500 in cash to complete the purchase price.

During 2019, the Socimi is planning to undertake a comprehensive renovation of the building to reposition it and adapt it to the standards demanded by the market.

Original story: Diario Vasco 

Translation: Carmel Drake

GMP Signs Spain’s First “Green” Loan with BBVA: €68M for Castellana 77

9 December 2018 – Eje Prime

The Spanish real estate sector has obtained its first green loan. Specifically, the Socimi GMP, controlled by the Montoro family, has signed a loan of that type with BBVA to finance the project to renovate Castellana 77, an office building in the Azca area. In total, the real estate company has received €68 million.

Specifically, the Socimi acquired the building from BBVA in 2015. GMP has recently completed work to renovate the property. The company’s commitment to obtain the loan has been established around the fact that the money will be used to promote sustainability, according to Expansión.

GMP, which has the Singapore sovereign fund (GIC) amongst its reference shareholders, has been working for a while to create a portfolio of sustainable buildings. 80% of its assets have the Leed stamp and, last June, one of the jewels in its crown, the former Torre BBVA, obtained the Well Oro certificate, becoming the first property in Spain to merit that distinction.

During the first half of 2018, the Socimi saw its profits soar by 81% to exceed €110 million. The company recorded revenues of €49.5 million between January and June, down by 0.8% compared to the same period in 2017.

Currently, GMP has a portfolio of sixteen assets, which sum a total of twenty-seven buildings and a gross leasable area (GLA) of 360,000 m2. All of them are located in Madrid, along with the 65,105 m2 of buildable space that the group owns, concentrated in the urban developments of Valdebebas and Las Tablas. The company’s portfolio of projects also includes a residential tourist development in Alicante, which is called Las Colinas Golf&Country Club.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Inversiones Carney SL Buys an Office Building in Valencia from Cerberus

7 December 2018 – Levante EMV

The Madrilenian firm Inversiones Carney SL, backed by its Argentinian and Basque shareholders, has acquired an office building in the Alfafar commercial area, on the outskirts of Valencia. Specifically, the building is located between the MN4 shopping centre and Pista de Silla (road). The property, known as As Center, was constructed during the real estate boom and has remained inactive since then. Its status corresponds to the lack of activity over the last decade, but all of the building work has been finished.

The building is designed for companies. It comprises twelve floors and almost 200 offices. In 2010, at the height of the crisis, it passed into the hands of BBVA, which has held onto it ever since. In 2018, the property was sold to the US fund Cerberus, as part of the operation that saw the banking institution transfer it assets worth hundreds of millions of euros.

A few weeks ago, according to sources speaking to this newspaper, the property was sold to Inversiones Carney SL. That Madrilenian firm, which has Antonio Santiago Pérez as its administrator, has already undertaken some operations in the Community of Valencia, but not in the tertiary office field, at least not publicly. Specifically, according to the newspaper El Heraldo de Aragón, at the beginning of this year, the firm owned the Myo shopping centre, located on the Beneito industrial estate in Gandia. In 2016, it acquired a municipal plot, where a Decathlon store has been opened. This newspaper has contacted the company on two occasions in recent days but has not obtained a response.

One of the shareholders of Inversiones Carney is the firm Mazel Investments SA, which is based in Luxembourg. According to the latest accounts filed in the mercantile registry, corresponding to 2017, over the last two years, the company has undertaken real estate investments amounting to €24 million and €16.5 million, respectively. Moreover, its assets are worth more than €28.5 million.

According to the aforementioned newspaper, Carney is backed by Basque and Argentinian investors. Moreover, the firm has acquired the Plaza Imperial shopping centre in Zaragoza in 2018 with the intention of refloating it.

Original story: Levante EMV (by José Luis Garcia)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Marathon Buys an Office Building & a Hotel in Madrid for c. €30M

21 November 2018 – Expansión

The US investment fund Marathon is increasing its commitment to Spain with the acquisition of a mixed-use complex of buildings in Madrid, which houses an office block and a four-star hotel managed by the Mallorca-based chain Barceló.

Specifically, the US investment fund has closed an agreement with Credit Suisse Real Estate, owner of the asset until now, to acquire the complex for around €30 million, according to market sources speaking to Expansión.

The complex has a total surface area of 14,000 m2 and is located at numbers 19 and 21 Calle de Julián Camarillo in Madrid, one of the most established office districts in the east of the capital, a few minutes by car from the Ifema exhibition centre and Adolfo Suárez-Barajas airport.

The operation has been advised by the real estate consultancy firm Knight Frank.

The complex includes an office building, with a surface area of more than 9,100 m2, occupied by several tenants: Adquira, the company specialising in e-commerce; Lebara, the telephony company; Ixion, the robotics and drone firm; and Norgine, the pharmaceutical business, amongst others.

The complex also has retail and leisure areas and indoor and outdoor parking.

In addition, the asset houses a four-star hotel, managed by Barceló Group, now under the Occidental Hoteles brand.

The Hotel Occidental Madrid Este – previously known as Barceló Torre Arias – has 108 rooms, four of which are junior suites, as well as a gym, sauna and restaurant. The establishment also has two meeting rooms with capacity for up to 80 people.

With this operation, Marathon is strengthening its presence in the Spanish real estate market. The US fund is, together with Attestor, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays, Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan, one of the minority shareholders of the property developer Vía Célere, which is controlled by Värde (75%).

Moreover, the investment fund acquired the Bahía Azul shopping centre in Málaga in 2016.

Original story: Expansión (by Rebeca Arroyo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Colonial Sells Office Building on c/Alcalá to German Firm Real I.S.

1 October 2018 – Europa Press

Colonial has sold an office building in the centre of Madrid to the German financial firm Real I.S. The property is located on Calle Alcalá and is leased to the Regional Government’s Ministry for Education, according to a statement issued by the purchasing entity. The consideration paid has not been not disclosed.

The property in question dates back to the 19th century and was renovated in the 1990s. It is located at numbers 30 and 32 Calle Alcalá, Madrid, in the centre of the city and comprises office space spanning 9,100 m2, distributed over seven storeys, plus two underground floors for parking.

Real I.S. highlighted the investment opportunity offered by the property given its location and long-term rental agreement, as well as the “positive performance” of the real estate market in Madrid.

Original story: Europa Press

Translation: Carmel Drake

Zambal Buys Everis’s New HQ in Madrid from Axa for €94.5M

1 October 2018 – Eje Prime

Zambal has increased its commitment to offices in Madrid with the purchase from Axa of the Novus Building for €94.5 million. The Socimi managed by IBA Capital closed the transaction a few days ago, to acquire an asset with a surface area of 42,945 m2 and leased in its entirety, according to explanations provided by sources close to the deal speaking to EjePrime.

The property, located in the north of the Spanish capital, hit the headlines last May when Everis signed the largest rental operation in Madrid’s office market since 2013.

At the time, the international consultancy firm leased 37,800 m2 of the building, in which Hilti, the company that supplies technology to the construction sector, also occupies one floor, whilst the ground floor of the property houses the catering company Eurest. The operation has been advised by the consultancy firm Cushman&Wakefield.

The asset is located close to Barajas airport, at number 1 Avenida Fuente de la Mora and comprises six floors, in addition to 561 parking spaces. The property has been owned by Axa Real Assets since the summer of 2015, when that firm acquired it, together with another building in Barcelona, for €110 million. At the time, the property was the headquarters of the French group in the Spanish capital.

Now, the real estate arm of the French insurance company has divested this property (…), taking advantage of the investor appetite of the large Socimis and funds in the Spanish office market. Not in vain, in March, Axa sold another asset in Madrid to GreenOak, for which the company was asking €25 million.

Zambal is on a roll

In recent months, the Socimi has grown its portfolio with operations such as the deal it signed at the end of 2017 in the Julián Camarillo area of Madrid, where it acquired two office buildings for €38 million.

Zambal specialises in the investment and subsequent management of office and retail assets in cities such as Madrid and Barcelona, although the company is also open to assets such as nursing homes, hospitals, retail parks and logistics platforms.

Without resorting to bank financing, the Socimi approved a €80 million capital increase in July, which followed another injection completed last year amounting to €91 million.  The company’s main assets include, for example, the property at number 77, Avenida San Luis (which houses the headquarters of Gas Natural in Madrid); the Vodafone Building on Avenida de América; and the property at number 118 Avenida de Burgos, which is leased in its entirety to BMW.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Jabier Izquierdo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Barings Finalises Purchase of 5 Office Buildings in Madrid from Meridia

27 July 2018 – Eje Prime

The office market in Madrid is just a few days away from seeing the completion of a deal that is shaping up to be the largest operation of the summer. The British fund Barings is finalising the purchase of five office buildings owned by Meridia Capital in the Avalon business park, which have a total surface area of 25,785 m2, according to confirmation provided by sources close to the operation speaking to Eje Prime.

The American fund Starwood Capital was also a finalist in the bid for this portfolio of assets, but in the end, Barings has fought off the competition to seal the deal. The total amount of the operation has not been revealed, but the transaction is expected to be signed within the next few days. The real estate consultancy firm Savills Aguirre Newman is advising Meridia on the sale.

Located in the Julián Camarillo district, the new tech area of the Spanish capital, the Avalon business park comprises nine buildings and spans a total surface area of almost 47,000 m2. The rest of the properties in the complex are owned by GreenOak, which purchased its four assets from Banco Santander in 2015 for €40 million.

That same year, Meridia also completed its entry as an owner of the Avalon properties. In May 2015, the Catalan fund, led by the businessman Javier Faus, acquired the five Madrilenian buildings, as part of its purchase for €60 million of 33 assets from Naropa Capital, the family office owned by the Fernández Fermoselle family. The offices in Julián Camarillo were the main assets in the portfolio, but it also included commercial premises, residential properties and even a plot of land in Valencia.

With this operation, Barings is acquiring five assets that, in addition to a vast office space, have 423 parking spaces in a highly sought-after area of Madrid, close to the Adolfo Suárez-Barajas airport.

Diversification: after logistics and retail come offices

Barings is on fire in the Spanish real estate market. This latest operation that it is on the verge of signing in Madrid follows several others that it has closed over the last year, to take advantage of the new upward cycle in the real estate sector.

Nevertheless, Avalon is the first large portfolio that the British fund has purchased in the Spanish office market. Barings is, therefore, diversifying within the real estate sector, where it has made investments in the logistics and retail segments in recent months (…).

€23 million more for new purchases and to create a Socimi 

In the framework of its new roadmap for the Spanish real estate market, Barings carried out a capital increase amounting to €23.1 million last February for its Spanish subsidiary Barings Core Spain.

The reason for this reinforcement to its financial muscle resulted from the British fund’s interest to convert the company into a Socimi. The group’s intention is to combine all of the assets owned by Barings in Spain in this new vehicle and to list it on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) over the coming months, as revealed by Eje Prime.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Jabier Izquierdo & Pilar Riaño)

Translation: Carmel Drake