Hispania Fights Off Competition from Blackstone to Acquire Alua Hotel Portfolio

21 December 2017 – Eje Prime

Hispania is expanding its portfolio after defeating Blackstone. The Spanish Socimi and US fund were bidding for Alua Hotels’ island portfolio, comprising seven resorts in the Canary and Balearic Islands. The properties in question will now pass into the hands of the company managed by the Azora group, in exchange for the payment of €165 million.

With this acquisition, the company, in which George Soros holds a stake, has almost completed its hotel investment plans, in which the purchase of large hotel complexes on the Spanish islands plays a significant weight, according to a report submitted by Hispania to Spain’s National Securities and Exchange Commission (CNMV).

The assets acquired by the Socimi comprise AluaSoul Palma, AluaSoul Mallorca Resort, AluaSoul Alcudia Bay, AluaSoul Ibizia and AluaSun Torrenova, in the Balearic Islands; and Ambar Beach and Parque San Antonio, in the Canary Islands. The 1,700 rooms in the portfolio will continue to be operated by Alua Hotels.

After formalising this operation, Hispania now owns almost 13,000 rooms across 45 hotels. Currently, the valuation of the company is estimated to amount to more than €2 billion, mostly thanks to its hotel assets, although it also owns office buildings and homes.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Hotelier Catalonia Leads Ranking of Spain’s Top 15 Tourism Companies by Gross Margin

24 November 2017 – Preferente

Catalonia, the hotel chain based in Barcelona and owned by the Vallet family, leads the first ranking compiled by preferente.com of the Top 15 Spanish tourism companies by gross margin in 2016, with a 30.2% gross profit on its sales. It is followed by large hotel chains such as the Ibiza-based Palladium, and the Mallorcan-based Grupo Piñero and Riu, which all generated gross margins of more than 20% during the last financial year.

The chain owned by the Matutes family is the second in the ranking after obtaining an estimated gross margin of 28.6% on its sales in 2016; it is followed by the group owned by the Piñero family, which includes the Bahía Príncipe and Soltour businesses, with a gross margin of 24.2%; and the chain owned by the Riu family, with a gross margin of 23.8% and the leader of the ranking by EBITDA.

Completing the Top 5 is another large chain and another Catalan firm: H10, which recorded a gross profit on its sales of 19.8% in 2016, followed by Grupo Barceló, with a gross margin of 14.2%, which would have been greater if it did not include in its sales the intermediation activity of Ávoris, which generates higher volumes but lower margins.

After Group Barceló in the ranking comes Grupo Iberostar, which comprises Almundo and World2Meet; and then the hotel groups NH and Meliá, which all exceeded or equalled a gross profit of 10% of sales in 2016. After those companies come the Canarian firm Lopesan and the Catalan firm Hotusa, which groups together Keytel and Restel, with similar gross margins of around 9% over sales.

A vertically integrated tourism group: an airline, a travel agency and a bed bank follow them in the ranking. At number 12 is Globalia, the parent company of Air Europa and Halcón Viajes, with a gross margin of 3.8% of sales, followed very closely by Iberia (3.7%) and Viajes El Corte Inglés (2.4%). The B2B firm Hotelbeds appears in fifteenth place with an estimated gross margin of 2% in 2016, a year when it had not yet completed the purchase of Tourico and GTA, the first of which generates significant EBITDA.

In this way, according to the ranking prepared by the leading tourism website, the chains with the greatest presence in the Caribbean and those dedicated exclusively to resorts are those that generate the greatest gains with respect to their revenues. Meanwhile, the conglomerates that also include intermediaries would have higher gross margin figures if they only reflected their hotel businesses, given that although they invoice less, they are more profitable.

Original story: Preferente (by Andrea Bulla)

Translation: Carmel Drake