JLL: RE Inv’t Amounted To €8,757M In 2016

13 January 2017 – Expansión

Between January and December, investors spent €8,757 million buying tertiary assets, according to data from the real estate consultancy JLL. This figure is the second highest in the last decade, and is €650 million below the volume of sales and purchases recorded in 2015. That was the year when the invasion of international funds into Spain and the consolidation of the Socimis took the real estate market to figures never seen before, with a volume of investment upwards of €9,400 million.

But, unlike the previous year, 2016 saw the rise of commercial assets (primarily, shopping centres and high street premises) to lead the ranking in terms of real estate investment by segment, accounting for almost €3,000 million (€2,977 million, according to JLL) compared to €2,806 million spent on offices.

Two operations, the purchase of Torre Foster by Amancio Ortega, for €490 million and Merlin’s acquisition of Parque Adequa for €380 million, boosted the investment figure in the office segment, which, although hasn’t completely lost its appeal for buyers, has been relegated to second place due to a shortage of available prime space. (…).

Funds are selling off assets

The opposite is happening in the case of large commercial establishments. International funds’ interest in selling the properties that they bought during the crisis led to a boom in major operations last year, including the sale of the Diagonal Mar shopping centre by Northwood, which was acquired by one of Deutsche Bank’s real estate funds for €493 million; and the sale of Gran Vía de Vigo, for which the Socimi Lar España paid the fund Oaktree €145 million. (…).

In the case of hotels, despite significant one-off sales, such as the operation involving Hotel Villamagna, which was acquired by the Turkish group Dogus for €180 million, overall the investment volume fell from €2,739 million in 2015 to €2,155 million last year. Even so, the figure for 2016 exceeds the investment volume recorded in 2006, which previously held the record, when hotel sales amounted to €1,600 million (out of a total non-residential investment volume of €8,482 million).

Although commercial properties led the ranking as the preferred asset for investors, logistics assets also performed very well. Between January and December, €819 million was invested in logistics warehouses, platforms and centres, according to JLL. This figure practically doubles the purchases completed in 2015, when investors disbursed €434 million on these types of properties, according to the consultancy.

The key behind this success is due to the fact that logistics assets still offer high returns, compared with other properties, such as offices and shopping centres, which have lost some of their investment appeal, due to the high degree of interest in these assets in Spain.

Original story: Expansión (by Rocío Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Meridia Buys 2 Office Portfolios For Its Socimi

7 October 2016 – Expansión

Meridia Capital, the fund manager controlled by Javier Faus, has gone shopping again. The company has invested around €70 million in two real estate acquisitions.

On the one hand, Meridia has acquired two office buildings located in the Viladecans Business Park complex in Barcelona. This development was inaugurated at the end of 2007 by the property developer Goodman, which specialises in business parks. It houses the headquarters of companies such as Unilever. There, Meridia has acquired two properties with a combined surface area of 23,000 sqm and 282 parking spaces. The occupancy rate of the offices is around 80%, say real estate sources.

In addition, the manager has completed the purchase of a portfolio of offices with a surface area of 17,500 sqm, spread over several properties. Most of these buildings are located in Barcelona, although the portfolio also contains one asset in Pamplona. In Barcelona, the key asset is the Alta 1 building, located in Esplugues de Llobregat, next to the headquarters of Nestlé, which is also owned by Meridia.

The occupancy rate of this portfolio, acquired from a Catalan family office, stands at 84%.

Both acquisitions will be included in the portfolio of the Meridia Real Estate III fund, which filed its request to become a Socimi in April. This fund, which was created less than a year ago with initial capital amounting to €250 million (from large international investment firms) has an investment capacity of up to €600 million. The aim is that it will list as a Socimi on the MAB in 2018.

In addition to the two latest purchases, the new Socimi owns nine buildings (eight offices and one logistics warehouse) that Meridia bought from Inmoseguros in May for €50 million.

It is not the manager’s only fund. Meridia is also finalising the closure of its Meridia II fund, launched in May 2014, with an investment capacity of €400 million.

In total, Javier Faus’ management company has invested €180 million so far this year and expects to close some more deals before the end of the year. “We want to invest another €400 million over the next 18 months”, said Juan Barba, Director General of Real Estate at Meridia Capital.


Meridia Capital’s purchases come after several other office deals in Spain in recent times, such as the acquisition of Parque Adequa in Madrid – for which Merlin paid €380 million – which reflect the recovery of this segment.

In this way, the average return on the office market in Madrid increased by 9% during the third quarter of 2016 with respect to the same period in 2015 and by 18% with respect to Q3 2014, according to a report about the office segment by BNP Paribas Real Estate.

Original story: Expansión (by Rocío Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake