Thor Equities Finds a Tenant for its Jewel on Gran Vía

20 February 2019 – Eje Prime

Thor Equities has found a replacement for Sfera in the heart of Madrid. The US fund, which last year acquired number 30 Gran Vía for €75 million, has leased one of the commercial premises in the property to the sports fashion retailer Décimas.

The company has taken over the space measuring 600 m2 from Sfera, the fashion chain owned by El Corte Inglés. That retail company had occupied the premises since 2005 but decided to vacate it last year because it was too small for its new commercial format (…).

For Décimas, this new store represents a new step onto a prime thoroughfare. The chain concentrates the bulk of its store network in shopping centres, although it also has a flagship store on Calle Fuencarral (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by Silvia Riera)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Sfera Leaves Gran Vía & Frees Up 1,000 m2 of Prime Retail Space

23 August 2018 – Eje Prime

Sfera is freeing up 1,000 m2 of space in the centre of Madrid. In September, the fashion chain owned by El Corte Inglés is going to abandon the store it currently occupies on Gran Vía, with a useful commercial surface area of 600 m2. The company has decided not to renew the rent that tied it to the recent purchaser of the building, the US fund Thor Equities.

Located at number 30 on the Spanish capital’s main commercial thoroughfare, surrounded by competitor brands (Inditex, H&M, Tendam and Primark, amongst others), the store is no longer of interest to Sfera, which has justified its departure on the basis of the small size of the store for the exhibition model that it is developing, according to Cinco Días. The chain has occupied this three-story establishment (comprising the first, ground and basement floors) since 2005.

Sfera is immersed in a process to renovate and reorganise its business plan for its commercial activity in the centre of Madrid. The company recently remodelled its store at number 4 Calle Preciados, which has a surface area of 2,500 m2 spread over five storeys.

The objective of the chain is to strengthen the presence of its store on Preciados so that it will become the firm’s flagship store in the centre of Madrid. Similarly, Sfera is going to start work soon on the renovation of its store at number 56 Calle Fuencarral. The company’s portfolio of retail assets in the centre of the Spanish capital is completed by a second establishment at number 118 Calle Fuencarral and the concession stands it has in the El Corte Inglés stores in the area.

In total, Sfera renovated 26 of its stores in Spain in 2017. With a presence in 15 countries besides Spain, where it opened its newest store just a few months ago in Fuengirola (Málaga), the chain is investing considerably in the international real estate market. The clearest example is Mexico, where the firm has 45 stores, all operated as franchises.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Thor Completes Purchase of Gran Vía 30 for €75M

20 June 2018 – Property Week

Thor Equities has completed the acquisition of a mixed-use building on Madrid’s Gran Via from Angelo Gordon for €75m (£64.8m), Property Week can reveal.

The 4,480 m2 building on the 100-year old main street in the centre of Madrid, contains 1,172 m2 of retail space alongside nine floors of residential accommodation and a multi-disciplinary event space on the thirteenth floor. The retail space in Gran Via 30 is predominantly let to the Spanish fashion chain Sfera.

Original story: Property Week (by Richard Hook)

Edited by: Carmel Drake

Triuva Wants to Spend €100M in Spain Following Its Integration into Patrizia

3 April 2018 – Eje Prime

The German fund Triuva is looking for opportunities in Spain. The company, which has just completed its integration into another German real estate company, Patrizia, is going to allocate around €100 million to the acquisition of new assets in the Spanish market. The group is currently finalising the renovation of a building on Calle Serrano, 90 in Madrid, and has already leased the 6,300 m2 of retail and office space to Maisons du Monde and Natixis, respectively.

The fund is still hungry for new assets in Spain, and so it is considering the acquisition of office buildings, commercial assets and even hotels. Currently, the Spanish arm of Triuva is fully integrated into the Spanish business of Patrizia, which has its offices on the Madrilenian street Calle Génova.

Patrizia purchased the entire Triuva business in November last year, whereby creating a real estate giant of more than €30 billion. Triuva manages some forty funds around the world and has teamed up with more than eighty institutional investors in recent years.

Triuva has around 270 assets under management, worth €9.7 billion. In Spain, the fund owns three properties in prime locations. The first, acquired during the first quarter of 2015 for €70 million, is located on Calle Preciados, 4, and is leased to the fashion chain Sfera, itself owned by the Madrid-based department store group El Corte Inglés.

Last year, the fund acquired the Adidas flagship store located on Gran Vía, 21, also in Madrid, which had been owned until then by Iberfin Capital, which is in turn, owned by Medcap Real Estate. The consideration paid for that operation was not disclosed (…).

Serrano 90, its latest project 

The Serrano 90 building, also owned by Triuva, is located in the heart of Madrid’s golden mile. 70% of its total available space is allocated to offices and the remaining 30% to commercial use; the property also has a parking lot on its lower floors. According to sources in the sector, the fund has spent around €10 million on the renovation of the asset.

At the beginning of this year, Triuva closed the rental of 6,300 m2 of retail and office space. The retail premises have been leased to the French firm Maisons du Monde, which is going to open its first flagship high street store in Madrid, to accompany the store it already has in central Barcelona.

The household furniture and accessories firm is going to lease 1,860 m2 of space in the building spread over three floors (…). Similarly, the property is going to house the headquarters of Natixis, a French corporate and investment bank, whose offices are currently located in Recoletos. Triuva and the banking institution have signed a rental agreement for 2,940 m2 of office space, as well as the terrace and 34 parking spaces in the Serrano 90 building.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Itaroa Shopping Centre (Navarra) Goes Up For Sale

15 March 2018 – Expansión

The shopping centre sector is still red hot. After the intense investment activity of last year, which has continued during the first few months of 2018, new assets are still coming onto the market. The latest is Itaroa, a shopping centre located in Huarte (Navarra), which has hung up the for sale sign, according to market sources speaking to Expansión.

The asset, managed by the local property developer Javier Gómez, has a surface area of 42,000 m2 and contains a Hipercor, owned by El Corte Inglés, which would not form part of the sales process. To search for potential buyers, the owner has engaged the consultancy firm Colliers International Spain, formerly Irea.

The vendor is asking around €90 million for the asset. The Itaroa shopping centre is mortgaged to the German financial institution Aareal Bank by way of guarantee for a €71 million loan. The mortgage was constituted in 2003 and has been renewed on several occasions, according to the latest information available from the Mercantile Registry.

Last year, Itaroa launched a renovation of its leisure and restaurant area to expand and improve the offer at the centre with the incorporation of new brands. It spent €4 million on that expansion.

Itaroa’s tenants in the fashion and accessories sectors include brands such as Zara, Sfera, Merkal, Bershka and Décimas. The shopping centre is also home to a Yelmo cinema.

This move comes in addition to the sale of a portfolio by Sonae Sierra and CBRE GI comprising three assets and the sale of the Ballonti centre (Vizcaya). Last year, the investment market for shopping centres reached a volume of around €2.7 billion, thanks to record operations such as the purchase of Xanadú, in Arroyomolinos (Madrid), for €530 million. The investor appetite is expected to continue this year, which has led some owners taking advantage of the situation to divest.

Original story: Expansión (by Rebeca Arroyo)

Translation: Carmel

Primark Buys New Flagship Store In Mallorca From Carrefour Property

31 March 2017 – Eje Prime

The Irish company has completed the purchase from Carrefour Property of a space where will open its flagship store in Palma de Mallorca, located in the Fan Mallorca Shopping Centre. The establishment has a commercial area of 5,700 m2, spread over two floors.

Primark’s flagship store in Palma de Mallorca will be the operator’s third large-format store in Spain. It will be exceeded in size only by the establishment that the firm has on Calle Gran Vía in Madrid and by the store it has in Granada.

Fan Mallorca Shopping, which opened its doors on 22 September 2016, involved investment of more than €190 million to secure more than 112 stores, housing international and domestic brands, such as H&M, Mango, C&A, Cortefiel, Sfera, Women’secret, Springfield; and operators such as Decathlon, Media Markt, Samsung, Artesiete Cines, Starbucks, VIPS, La Tagliatella, Udon, Pandora, Jean Louis David and Dock 39, amongst others.

The shopping centre, which generated 1,500 direct jobs and 2,000 indirect positions, has a constructed surface area of 170,000 m2 and a commercial area of more than 72,000 m2 (gross leasable area), plus 2,800 parking spaces.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Talus To be Ortega’s Neighbour On Gran Vía

29 January 2015 – Cinco Días

Two buildings on the same street in Madrid have changed hands within just over a week of each other. The fund Talus Real Estate has agreed the acquisition of the building on Gran Vía 30 (on the corner of Calle Valverde) for €42 million. On Monday, the company Drago Real Estate announced the sale of its building on Gran Vía 32 to Pontegadea, the company that owns Inditex’s real estate assets and receives its dividends on behalf of Amancio Ortega, the founder and primary shareholder of the fashion group.

According to sources close to the negotiations, JLL and Aguirre Newman have participated in the sale of the property on Gran Vía 30, as advisory consultants. However, the companies involved did not want to confirm this information yesterday.

The same sources said that the buyer plans to refurbish the property. The fashion chain Sfera, owned by El Corte Inglés, has a store that occupies two floors of the building.

Talus Real Estate’s main executives are David Finkel and Jordi Moix and its headquarters are located in Madrid. According to the company’s website, before joining Talus, Finkel worked for Westbrook Parners, where he co-directed their business in London. Westbrook Partners is a real estate investment group that was founded in 1994, has offices in the US, London, Munich, Paris and Tokyo and has invested USD 10,000 million to date. Prior to that, he worked for the Japanese entity, Nomura and for iStar Financial, another international real estate investment group.

Moix has held senior positions in the Spanish real estate companies Reyal Urbis, Metrovacesa, Layetana and Habitat; he has also worked for IAG and Citibank. Currently, he is vice-president of FC Barcelona’s real estate business.

Gran Vía is trading up

The sale of the property on Gran Vía 30 is the latest in a series of transactions undertaken on the Madrid street that will change its appearance as it approaches its 105th birthday.

The fashion group Primark will occupy several floors of Gran Vía 32, when it opens its largest store in Spain there. Talus Real Estate will also refurbish the Gran Vía 30 building. In Plaza de España, the Chinese group Wanda will convert the Edificio España into a luxury hotel and shopping centre. Next to the building sold by Santander, the hotel chain Barceló will take over some of Torre Madrid to open another hotel.

Late last year, Axa Real Estate, a subsidiary of the insurance company Axa, acquired Gran Vía 37, where the fashion retailer H&M has its largest store in Spain and which used to house the Avenida cinema, for €80 million. Also last year, the Community of Madrid sold Gran Vía 20 for €20 million to Caja Rural de Almendralejo Sociedad Cooperativa de Crédito.

2015, another big year for real estate investment

With the sale of Gran Vía 32 and the upcoming sale of the Plenilunio shopping centre, the amount of investment in Madrid will amount to €800 million. According to sources familiar with the transaction, the sale of the shopping centre will reach a figure close to €400 million.

In 2014, investment in real estate in Spain amounted to between €6,000-€9,000 million, almost twice the figures recorded in the previous three years.

During the year ahead, Socimis, which revolutionised the sector in 2014, will continue to invest, as will investment banks, whereby replacing opportunistic funds. The liquidity injection announced by the ECB will boost the sector. The expected sale of Realia will be another major transaction. Industry experts are also drawing attention to investment in logistics platforms.

Original story: Cinco Días (by Alberto Ortín Ramón)

Translation: Carmel Drake

El Corte Inglés Values Its Properties In Galicia At €600m

26 January 2015 – La Voz De Galicia

El Corte Inglés’s Galician assets account for almost 5% of the total, valued at €15,000 million.

The value of the real estate assets owned by El Corte Inglés in Galicia amounts to €601 million. So the company led by Dimas Gimeno revealed in information sent to the Irish Stock Exchange (the stock market in Ireland), on the occasion of its first bond issue (€500 million) placed by Hipercor.

According to the 333-page document, El Corte Inglés owns 217,000 square metres of retail space in Galicia, with an average value of €2,344 per square metre. Overall, the group’s most expensive buildings are located in Madrid (€4,823 million), followed by Andalucía (€2,563 million) and Cataluña (€1,646 million).

The group has explained to the Irish regulator that Tinsa Tasaciones Inmobiliaria valued most of the group’s property portfolio in September 2013 and March 2014, and assigned it an aggregated value of €15,126 million, of which almost 5% (by surface area) is located in the region of Galicia.

Department stores account for the majority of the group’s real estate assets (€9,187 million), followed by hypermarkets (€4,338 million), other retail space (€803 million) and offices and mixed-use properties (€797 million). “The group has developed an irreplicable property portfolio with unique locations” says the group.

At the end of last year, the group had around 1,555 outlets in total, including 88 department stores, 43 hypermarkets, 203 supermarkets and 451 specialist stores.

42 properties

According to the document, at the end of last year, the group’s commercial presence in Galicia comprised 42 outlets located across the four provinces, including Viajes El Corte Inglés offices (15), Sfera stores (11), Bricor stores (4), Óptica 2000 shops (4), Hipercor stores (2), Supercor shops (11) and El Corte Inglés stores (4).

The department store business accounts for almost 60% of the group’s consolidated turnover. Including Hipercor, Sfera and Viajes El Corte Inglés, amongst others, the group’s revenue amounted to €14,291 million in 2013.

Within the department store division, 51.1% of turnover is generated by the fashion, accessories, jewellery and beauty departments, which together accounted for revenues of €3,858 million.

In the document submitted to the Irish regulator, the group also highlighted the importance of its brands (the fashion lines Emilio Tucci, Green Coast, Dustin and Formul@), which now account for 16% of revenues, compared with 11% in 2008.

The group also revealed that approximately 635 million people visited its stores during 2013. Furthermore, 155 million people visited its website, where it has 4.2 million registered users.

Only twelve female directors

In the final part of the report, which focuses on accounting aspects, there is also mention of employment considerations.

For example, last year, its workforce comprised 93,223 employees, however only 12 of its executives were women, compared with 186 men. Also, 4,276 females were employed as supervisors, versus 9,141 men. In stores, however, women were in the majority, with 47,434 female sales assistants, versus 18,283 males.

Original story: La Voz De Galicia (by M. Sío Dopeso)

Translation: Carmel Drake