Emesa Sells a 32,000 m2 Warehouse to Blackstone for €18M

17 June 2019 – Eje Prime

Emesa has completed the sale of a logistics warehouse spanning 32,000 m2 located in Valls (Tarragona) to the US fund Blackstone for €18 million, as part of its mission to divest its non-strategic assets.

The warehouse does not currently have a tenant and will have to be renovated before being put up for rent.  

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Blackstone Negotiates Sale of Helios Building to a South Korean Fund for €200M

10 June 2019 – Eje Prime

The British real estate manager Savills Investment Management (IM) is looking to buy the Helios office building from Blackstone on behalf of an unidentified South Korean investor.

The property, which is currently under construction, will have ING as its main tenant and the sales price could reach €200 million.

The largest investor in South Korea is the National Pension Service (NPS) and the next largest is the Korea Investment Corporation (KIC). Other possible investors include the country’s banks, the manager IGIS and Samsung Securities.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Telefónica Finalises the Sale of its Catalan Headquarters

4 May 2019 – Expansión

Telefónica is on the verge of selling its headquarters in Barcelona for more than €150 million in a sale and leaseback operation that will see the group continue to occupy 8 floors of the property, but on a rental basis.

The 16-storey skyscraper, known as Diagonal 00, has a surface area of 34,000 m2 and is located next to the Fòrum on the edge of the 22@ district. The property was constructed by the Consortium of the Zona Franca in Barcelona (CZF) as a turnkey project for Telefónica, which moved in in 2011.

The telecommunications giant went on to purchase the property from CZF in 2014 for €107 million plus VAT (€129.4 million) and is now selling it as part of its debt reduction process, which has already seen it divest businesses in Central America and the insurance company Antares.

Original story: Expansión (by M. Anglés & I. del Castillo)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Testa Suspends the Rental of its Homes Following Approval of New Rental Act

24 April 2019 – El Boletín

Blackstone, the fund that has invested the most in the Spanish real estate sector over the last five years, has reportedly suspended the rental of hundreds of homes managed by its Socimi Testa following the approval of the new Rental Act by Pedro Sánchez’s government on 1 March.

The new decree lengthens rental contracts, giving tenants the right to remain in properties for seven years in those cases in which the landlord is a company, and prohibits rent increases above CPI.

Testa has more than 11,000 properties under management and Blackstone has owned a majority stake in the Socimi since last year after acquiring shares from banks and other groups.

According to professionals from intermediary companies that work for Blackstone, a decision was taken to suspend Testa’s activity following the approval of the decree, in light of the uncertainty generated. Activity is expected to resume in May, following the general election.

Blackstone already warned a couple of months ago that the new Rental Act is discriminatory and would only serve to increase rental prices.

Original story: El Boletín

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Socimi Lar Sells its Last Office Building in Madrid to Swiss Life for €40M

24 April 2019 – Idealista

Lar España has sold the last office building left in its portfolio as it continues its strategy to specialise in the retail sector.

The Socimi has sold the property located at number 27 Calle Eloy Gonzalo, in the centre of Madrid, to the manager of the Swiss insurance company Swiss Life for €40 million. The building spans a surface area of 6,300 m2, distributed over 9 floors with various retail premises on the ground floor. The upper floors are leased in their entirety to the US coworking specialist WeWork.

Lar España acquired the property, which was constructed in the 1960s, for €12.7 million at the end of 2014.

Following this sale, the Socimi can now focus on the 14 assets in its retail portfolio (shopping centres and retail parks), which will become 15 after the summer, once the Lagoh shopping centre has been opened in Sevilla.

This represents the Swiss manager’s second purchase in Spain, following its acquisition of 13 retail premises from Corpfin Capital Prime Retail Assets in July 2018 for more than €83 million.

Various high-profile consultancy firms participated in the operation, with Cushman & Wakefield advising on the buy side and JLL and Knight Frank on the sell side.

Original story: Idealista (by Ana P. Alarcos)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Grosvenor Purchases the MB One Building in Madrid for €80M

15 April 2019 – Eje Prime

Grosvenor has reached an agreement with Blackstone to acquire the MB One building, known for housing Citi’s headquarters, in La Moraleja (Madrid) for €80 million.

The US fund currently owns the property through Chameleon, a company that has put all of its assets up for sale.

MB One has a surface area of 22,129 m2, distributed over four modules and five storeys.

This represents Grosvenor’s return to the office market and accompanies its activity in the luxury residential market in Spain, where it plans to invest €200 million in projects in the neighbourhoods of Salamanca and Chamberí.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

The Lawyers’ Mutual Society Buys Paseo de la Habana, 3 for €23.4M

3 April 2019 – El Confidencial

Grupo Millenium has sold an office building on Paseo de la Habana, 3, in Madrid to the Mutualidad de la Abogacía (Lawyers’ Mutual Society) for €23.4 million. In fact, the deal was signed in April 2018, but has only just come to light after the Mutualidad published its annual accounts for last year.

The building has been completely renovated and is leased in its entirety to Gunni & Trentino, the Spanish company specialising in high-end interior decoration, which houses its headquarters there. The property is located in a prime area, just 100m from Paseo de la Castellana and Nuevos Ministerios, and comprises 3,000 m2 distributed over five storeys.

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Socimi Ores Acquires Stradivarius’ Premises in Burgos for €5.2M

29 March 2019 – Idealista

The Socimi Ores, owned by Bankinter and Sonae, has acquired a commercial premise in Burgos, occupied by Stradivarius, for €5.2 million. The store has a surface area of 724 m2 and is located at number 13 Calle Moneda. The purchase has been financed using available cash, taking Ores’ purchases so far this year to more than €92.2 million.

Original story: Idealista (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

El Corte Inglés Reduces the First Phase of its RE Sales Process to €1bn

29 March 2019 – El Confidencial

El Corte Inglés is refining the plan for its real estate divestment strategy. After hiring Javier Catena as the new Director of Real Estate, the group has decided to sell off its assets in phases and will begin by activating the sale of 95 assets, from an initial perimeter of 130.

The department store giant has engaged PwC to open the tender process for investors, with the aim of receiving final offers by the end of April.

The revised portfolio includes 14 commercial premises, 16 plots of land and 65 assets of various types, such as flats and parking spaces, which together span a total surface area of 1.2 million m2 and which are primarily located in Madrid, Barcelona, Málaga and Sevilla.

Investors may bid for all or part of this first portfolio, or even for specific assets only. Most of the properties for sale are being offered with the option of a sale and leaseback arrangement, whereby the vendor would remain as the tenant following the sale.

By reducing the perimeter of this first phase to 95 properties, ECI has decreased the proceeds that it expects to receive from RE sales this year to €1 billion, compared to the figure of between €1.5 billion and €2 billion that it had announced in December.

Original story: El Confidencial (by R. Ugalde)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

OneCoWork Invests €5.5M to Open 3,700m2 Coworking in Barcelona

18 March 2019 – Eje Prime

OneCoWork is going to invest €5.5 million to open its third shared office space in Barcelona in 2020. The company, founded in 2016 and led by Benjamin Nachoom, will open its new centre on the corner of Via Laietana and Avenida de la Catedral, in a building owned by the insurance company Zurich.

The office will span 3,750 m2 and will be opened on a gradual basis, with 1,800 m2 due to be inaugurated in April 2019, 600 m2 during H2 2019 and the remainder in 2020.

The group plans to have 40 coworking offices across Europe by 2022, including one in Madrid and another in Valencia, Bilbao or Málaga.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Marta Casado Pla)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake