La Caixa Finalises its Purchase of 49.9% of Saba for €900M

6 June 2018 – Expansión

Criteria is planning to acquire 100% of the parking lot group, which has itself closed several operations in recent months, resulting in the addition of almost 15,000 parking spaces to its portfolio.

Reorganisation between the shareholders of Saba, the parking lot group controlled by Criteria (50.1%), the industrial holding company of la Caixa, and in which Torreal (20%), KKR (18.2%) and ProA (10.5%) hold stakes, along with 3,000 minority shareholders (1.2%).

Criteria is finalising the acquisition of the remaining 49.9% that it does not yet own in Saba for €900 million, according to sources in the infrastructure sector. It remains to be seen whether this operation will be completed in time to be approved at the Ordinary General Shareholders’ Meeting, which is scheduled to be held next Tuesday, 12 June. The celebration of the assembly had been postponed from 9 May precisely for the purpose of signing the deal that will see Criteria take complete control over the group chaired by Salvador Alemany.

The agenda for Saba’s General Shareholders’ Meeting includes the ratification and appointment of the company’s directors. In the event that the takeover does not take place, the most feasible option would be for another General Shareholders’ Meeting to be convened, but in that case an Extraordinary one.

The price at which Saba had been valued initially amounted to around €1.4 billion for 100% of the Catalan company, based on a multiplier of around 14 times its EBITDA in 2016. Saba’s accounts for 2017 have not been published yet, pending the General Shareholders’ Meeting next week, but a slight increase is expected both in turnover and profits, boosted by the strong performance of the firm in countries such as Portugal. In 2016, the company recorded a comparable gross profit of €94 million after generating revenues of €205 million, 66% of which were recorded in Spain.

Original story: Expansión (by M. Á. Patiño, A. Zañón & C. Morán)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Saba Wants To Complete A Major Purchase Before Its IPO

1 June 2017 – Expansión

Saba is analysing several major operations with the aim of growing in size before it debuts on the stock market, according to the plans that the company’s President, Salvador Alemany (pictured above, right) outlined yesterday, at the car park group’s General Shareholders’ Meeting.

“We are looking at operations that would allow us to grow significantly and which would take several months or years to complete; afterwards [with our debut on the stock market], we would see the results of all of the efforts that we have been making since 2011”, said Alemany yesterday, in response to two questions from the company’s two minority shareholders. For the time being, there is no specific timetable for the firm’s debut on the stock market – Saba set itself the objective at the same time that it was carved out from Abertis in 2011.

The CEO of Saba, Josep Martínez Vila (pictured above, left), confirmed that Empark is one of the operations under analysis, but that there are also others in the running. The advantage of acquiring that firm stems from the fact that it would allow Saba to double in size; by contrast, it would mean concentrating its business even more in Spain, which last year accounted for 71% of its turnover.

The group closed 2016 with turnover of €202 million, compared to €225 million in 2015, a year when it was still recording revenues from its logistics parks. Saba, which yesterday approved the distribution of an issue premium amounting to €20 million, earned €4 million from its ordinary activity, a figure that increases to €32.36 million with the profits from its logistics business.

The company, which was just awarded the contract to manage 12,000 parking spaces in three shopping centres in Chile, has also just agreed with the banks to improve the conditions of a €465 million loan.

Original story: Expansión (by A. Zanon)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Saba Sells Toulouse Logistics Park To CBRE For €23M

18 September 2015 – Expansión

The group is focusing on its car parks / The company has sold a logistics park in Toulouse for €23 million.

Saba is continuing to take steps to exit the logistics sector and focus its activity on its core car park business. Yesterday, the group led by Salvador Alemany announced the sale of a logistics park in Toulouse (France) to CBRE Global Investors for €23 million.

The asset has a surface area of 20 hectares and was one of the company’s key sites, thanks to its strategic location in the neighbouring country, 30 kilometres away from the French city, one of the centres of the global aviation industry.

This divestment whereby reduces the group’s international presence to Lisbon, where it owns a site with a surface area of 100 hectares. The economic crisis in Spain has been more intense than in Spain and the demand for logistics space is not as great as in the areas close to the cities of Madrid and Barcelona.

In 2012, Saba began its exit from this business segment with the sale of a logistics park in Chile for €56 million, a deal that allowed it to begin its policy of shareholder remuneration.

In Spain, Saba is about to sell its 32% stake in Cilsa, the company that operates the Logistics Activities Area (ZAL) in Barcelona, measuring 208 hectares and located in one of the best areas of the Catalan capital. It is the last major logistics asset that Saba still owns.

The Competition Commission is studying Saba’s exit from this company; its stake is due to be acquired by Merlin. One of the unresolved questions is whether Sepes will hold onto its 5% stake in Cilsa – which does not even entitle it to sit on the Board of Directors – or whether Merlin will acquire the whole package.


In Spain, Saba – which is controlled by Criteria CaixaHolding – last year sold a logistics park in Coslada (Madrid), some land in San Fernando and a logistics park in Penedés (Barcelona), in a deal worth €100 million.

The firm has continued to withdraw from its logistics business, whilst at the same time closing operations that have enabled it to make important in-roads into the car park sector, with new contracts at Adif train stations, Aena airports and with the Town Hall of Barcelona.

Saba generated revenues of €215 million in 2014 – the logistics division accounted for 19% of sales and car parks accounted for the remainder. In Spain, Saba still owns logistics assets in the provinces of Barcelona, Álava and Sevilla.

Original story: Expansión (by A. Zanón)

Translation: Carmel Drake