GreenOak Puts All Of Its Logistics Assets Up For Sale

29 November 2016 – El Confidencial

Early in the summer of 2015, the opportunistic fund GreenOak surprised the market by announcing its unbridled appetite for the Spanish logistics market. In June of that year, the vehicle funded and managed by John Carrafiell announced that it had just purchased five logistics assets in the Community of Madrid, with a combined surface area of 200,000 m2, and that it had agreed to acquire another 100,000 m2.

Over the next few months, the fund completed a barrage of operations, involving the acquisition of, amongst others: a 14,000 m2 platform, which became the largest logistics operation in the País Vasco in 2015; a 30,000 m2 asset in Toledo, leased to Schwepees; the Michelin logistics platform in Seseña, which has a surface area of 47,000 m2; and a portfolio covering 144,320 m2 spread across several properties in Zaragoza and Massalvés (Valencia), which it purchased from Prologis.

Thus, in just 12 months, GreenOak fulfilled its objective of acquiring a portfolio covering 500,000 m2, but rather than develop it, the US fund has now decided to put it up for sale, and whereby take advantage of the strong appetite from institutional investors and specialists in the sector. According to several sources familiar with the sale, the fund has opened a formal sales process, whose first key milestone was recorded last week, with the presentation of preliminary offers from interested parties.

The US firm Eastdil Secured, a subsidiary of Wells Fargo, is coordinating the process, according to the same sources, who point out that this advisor was also chosen by the Canadian fund Ivanhoe to coordinate the sales process of Xanadú, one of the largest shopping centres in Spain, which was sold for around €500 million.

GreenOak’s decision to divest its entire logistics portfolio is seen in the market as an operation by an opportunistic fund, which knew how to buy cheaply and which has decided to take advantage of the interest from more stable investors to generate rapid capital gains. The consideration for the operation is expected to exceed €200 million, compared with the figure of around €125 million that GreenOak has invested to build the portfolio.

Opportunistic buyer

GreenOak signed its first major property purchase in Spain in 2014, when it acquired seven shopping centres from the Dutch group Vastned Retail for €160 million. (…).

It then went onto buy the building located at number 77 on Calle Fuencarral, which it acquired from the General Social Security Treasrury for €21 million; followed by the Sevilla Factory shopping centre, which it bought for €12 million; an office building in Port Cornellá (Barcelona), which it purchased for €10.1 million; and four buildings in the Avalon Business Park (Madrid) and another one in Arroyo de la Vega (Alcobendas), on which it spent more than €55 million in total, according to the figures disclosed in the annual accounts of Gore Spain, the Socimi through which the fund channels its investments in our country.

The icing on the cake for GreenOak came in June this year, when it acquired the Las Mercedes Business Park from Standard Life. The property is located on the outskirts of Madrid, next to the A-2 motorway and comprises an 80,000 m2 complex with 10 buildings, of which nine are used for offices, with the tenth used for the provision of general services.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Prologis Buys Land In Valencia To Build 2 Logistics Warehouses

4 August 2016 – Mis Naves

Prologis Inc. has acquired land measuring 70,000 sqm in Valencia.

Prologis will build two leasable logistics buildings, measuring 23,000 sqm each, on the land and expects to begin construction during the third quarter of this year.

The land is located in the PLV de Ribarroja de Túria, a ideal location for the implementation of logistics activity. The two new properties will have cutting-edge facilities, including a minimum storage height of 11m, allowing them to increase storage volumes by 20% compared to a standard warehouse.

In addition, the warehouses will be equipped with LED lighting in the storerooms and offices, which will result in savings of around 40% in terms of electricity consumption, as well as the most efficient fire prevention system in the market.

“Our idea is to offer our clients a high quality product, based on design and efficiency, that highlights all of the features currently being offered in the logistics real estate market in Valencia”, said Cristian Oller, Director of Development and Projects at Prologis in Spain. “For us, this represents an interesting challenge to put into practice our model for the development of new buildings in a market as important for the logistics sector as Valencia”.

“We are very proud to return to Valencia and to start new developments in this market, which is becoming increasingly important in the logstics sector in Spain and Southern Europe”, said Gustavo Cardozo, Senior Vice-President at Prologis Iberia. “Our strategy for the next few years involves growing our business in Valencia and consolidating our position as a supplier of cutting-edge logistics warehouses in this market”.

The real estate consultancy Inmoking Real Estate was responsible for advising this operation. The marketing of the properties will be carried out jointly by the real estate agencies Inmoking Real Estate and BNP Paribas Real Estate.

Original story: Mis Naves

Translation: Carmel Drake

BNP: Inv’t In Logistics Assets Reached €662M In 2015

8 June 2016 – Mis Naves

According to the real estate consultancy firm, BNP Paribas, “2015 was an exceptional year” for the logistics sector in Spain, with total investment amounting to €662 million, whereby exceeding the figure recorded in the previous year to register the highest investment volume in the last eleven years.

The data available for 2016, corresponding to the first quarter, confirms this rising trend, with total investment exceeding €320 million between January and March 2016 – this figure essentially relates to three large portfolios: Metrovacesa, Zaphir and Prologis.

For the analysts at BNP Paribas Real Estate, the good performance of consumption and industrial output, which began three years ago, has continued to boost the logistics market in 2015 and so far in 2016. Moreover, the shortage of high quality products has led to a slight increase in income and above all, to a stabilisation of prices. Thanks to the availability of land, new developments may go on the market at these rental prices. For this reason, the consultancy considers that 2016 offers good opportunities for buying and selling logistics assets.

It is worth highlighting two key milestones that are shaping the evolution of the logistics real estate sector and boosting the strong outlook for this sector.

On the one hand, 2014 and 2015 were the years when the highest ever investments were made in logistics warehouses. More than 50% of the high quality logistics warehouses changed hands during that period. The market saw a generational change in owners, with the disappearance of some and the appearance of others. The latter group includes international investors, which have been positioning themselves in the market, including several specialists, such as Prologis, which have strengthened their positioning; and the Socimis, which have secured capital overseas and invested it in this segment to create significant portfolios of logistics warehouses. During the first quarter of 2016, the main Socimis and funds interested in logistics assets invested around €320 million.

On the other hand, consumer habits have changed with the crisis, which has led to a very significant increase in the volume of purchases made online, to the detriment of in-store shopping. In this vein, e-commerce is growing at an average rate of 20% p.a.. To the extent that the volume of purchases made online increases, so too does demand for logistics spaces designed to provide support for these types of businesses. In 2015, around 17,000 sqm of logistics space was leased for e-commerce use. Even so, in Spain, online shopping accounts for just 3% of overall consumption, which reflects the potential for growth in the country, above all if we compare it with other markets such as Germany and the UK, where e-commerce accounts for 10% and 13.5% of all shopping, respectively. (…).

During 2016, consumption is expected to continue to grow with the same energy, along with the leasing of logistics space. Income will continue to increase and yields will continue to decrease due to the shortage of high quality logistics products. The e-commerce business will grow and so too will demand for cross-docking and XXL warehouses. The main Socimis and funds will continue to expand their portfolios with logistics assets. (…).

Original story: Mis Naves

Translation: Carmel Drake

Blackstone Owns c.5% Of Spain’s Logistics Assets

28 June 2016 – Expansión

Blackstone created Logicor in 2012 and since then, has grown the company by acquiring portfolios of logistics assets, to reach its current surface area coverage of 13 million sqm.

In Spain, Logicor has been purchasing assets for three years and now owns properties covering a total surface area of 1.1 million sqm, primarily in Madrid and Barcelona, making it the largest owner of logistics land in the country, with a market share of between 5% and 7%. It is followed in the ranking by Merlin Properties and Prologis, in an otherwise very fragmented sector.

Logicor’s Director General for Southern Europe, Manel Vericat, said that the company is still looking for logistics warehouses in Madrid and Barcelona, as well as in other cities, such as Valencia and Pamplona: “We are searching for products that have may potential thanks to the management of our team; and we are able to participate in operations that have higher risk because we have experience in this segment and are capable of managing these situations.

The Spanish subsidiary is led by Alejando Rumayor, who previously worked for Aguirre Newman, Iberdrola Inmobiliaria, ING Reim and CBRE, where he worked last before joining Logicor. The team in Barcelona is led by Xavier Novell, who joined the firm from Aguirre Newman, where he led the logistics and industrial department for the last decade.

In recent years, Logicor has made some major investments in Spain, such as the purchase of a portfolio of logistics assets from CBRE Global Investments, which covered a surface area of 78,000 sqm.

It also acquired a batch of logistics warehouses covering 106,000 sqm, from the French insurance company Axa.

Similarly, it purchased a batch of logistics assets from Gran Europa with a combined surface area of 319,000 sqm. And another one from SEP investments, measuring 138,000 sqm. Finally, one of its most important acquisitions at the global level involved a batch of warehouses from General Electric, of which around 348,000 sqm were located in Spain.

Rents

Vericat confirmed that, since last year, rents in the logistics sector have recovered in Barcelona. In Madrid, “we have not detected any increases yet, but certain rent incentives have disappeared, such as grace periods.

Original story: Expansión (by Marisa Anglés)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Norwegian Pension Funds Sells Off Two Logistics Assets

22 April 2016 – Expansión

The Norwegian Pension Fund has sold its 50% stake in two logistics assets in Spain, which it held jointly with Prologis, for €25.1 million. The operation has been performed through Norges Bank Real Estate Management, the company that it created in 2014 to independently manage its investments in the real estate sector, which it expects to account for 5% of its investment portfolio in the future.

The properties, which have a combined leasable surface area of 96,000 m2, are located in Valencia and Zaragoza. The Fund acquired the assets in March 2013 for €20.6 million.

Original story: Expansión (by A. Medina)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Prologis: Sales Grow By 16% In 2014

20 February 2015 – Cinco Días

The logistics space developer recorded sales of €37 million in 2014 and increased its leasable area by 31%.

Prologis, the multinational developer of industrial land increased its turnover in Spain by 16% to €37 million in 2014. The company improved its sales after investing €124 million in the country in one year.

Gustavo Cardozo, Vice President of Prologis and Director of the subsidiary in Spain stresses that “2014 was a very positive year” in which, he considers “we exceeded all market expectations”. Cardozo argues that Spain is attracting interest due to the “improvement in its image and in its economy”.

The company has had a presence in Spain since the end of the 1990s. In the last three years alone, it has invested a total of €160 million and 2014 was its busiest year. According to Cardozo, the market has been boosted by an improvement in the trade balance. “Spain is no longer a country where the domestic market comes first”. Through these acquisitions, Prologis has increased its portfolio by 152,000 square metres, representing an increase of 31%.

Prologis’ main focus of activity has been along the A-2 corridor, with Madrid and Barcelona as the primary targets. Nevertheless, according to Cardozo, the company is going to begin operating in other areas, starting with the south of the capital and the north of the Catalunian city.

“We are open to investing in wherever we see has a future”, explains Cardozo, who does not put any limit on the acquisitions that his company may undertake. Nevertheless, he considers that it will be “very complicated” to repeat the investment volume achieved last year since that was “an extraordinary period”.

In the acquisition sphere, Cardozo sees “increased competition” following the arrival of overseas investment funds. He states that Prologis will focus on tailoring its properties to the specific needs of its clients in Spain, as it has done in previous transactions, such as the one undertaken with TNT Express at the end of last year.

Spain accounts for barely 1.7% of the multinational (group’s turnover), although Cardozo believes that “it will continue to grow”. Prologis has a strong presence in USA, Asia and Europe and generates global turnover of $1,700 million (approx. €1,500 million). Moreover, although the group’s total sales grew last year, “Spain outperformed the average”. The increase in the group’s turnover was driven by improved rental prices.

Prologis closed 2014 with an occupancy rate of 84.9% across the almost 900,000 square metres of space it owns (in Spain). The objective of the company is to close this year with an occupancy rate of 90%. To this end, the launch of the Prologis Park San Fernando in San Fernando de Henares (Madrid) will play an important role.

Original story: Cinco Días (by Diego Larrouy)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Saba Sells Logistics Assets to Prologis For €100 Mn

28/08/2014 – Expansion

Logistics arm of Saba, a parking-specialized company at which Criteria holds a 50% stake, has sold two logistics parks in Coslada (Madrid) and Subirats (Barcelona) to U.S. group Prologis, one of the worlds leaders in development and management of logistics complexes.

The transaction also includes lands pending development in San Fernando de Henares and Camarma de Esteruelas (Madrid) and it has been closed at the price of €100 million.

The logistics park of 62.900 square meters located in Coslada fully belonged to Saba, while the other lot of 89.000 square meters situated in the county of Alt Penedes was possessed by CPL. The lands in San Fernando de Henares and Camarma de Esteruelas jointly represent an area of 14.7 hectares.

Without the transferred lots, Saba still owns seven logistics parks in Spain: in the provinces of Barcelona, Seville and Alava, as well as in Portugal and France.

Next, Saba aims at purchase of a 60% stake at Bamsa, a joint venture which will manage 26 downtown parking lots owned by the city of Barcelona for the upcoming 25 years. The firm chaired by Salvador Alemany presently administers 180.000 spaces and with the acquisition of Bamsa he seeks gaining ground in the main business area.

The Tender of Bamsa

At the beginning of July, Saba outbid Belgian Interparking during the auction of Bamsa. The firm is obliged to pay €232 million for the 60% stake, whereas the remaining 40% will stay in hands of the City Hall of Barcelona.

Last year, Saba earned €190 million and obtained a net profit of €66.648 [million]. The company was born as a result of separation of the logisitics and parking division from Abertis. Apart from Criteria that holds 50% of it, other important shareholders are KKR, ProA and Torreal. Saba plans to go public in two or three years.

 

Original article: Expansión (by J. O.)

Translation: AURA REE