KF: Inv’t in Offices Amounted to €1.3bn & €0.8bn in Madrid & Barcelona, Respectively, in 2017

13 June 2018 – ABC

The performance of the office sector in Madrid at the end of 2017 bodes well for a “historical” 2018. That is according to all of the investment indicators managed by the real estate experts. Some very positive data for the region, which consolidates the Spanish capital’s position as the most attractive place for companies to locate their headquarters. In fact, it continues to be the greatest magnet for securing capital in the office market with a business volume of €1,324 million – 61% of the aggregated total – compared with €835 million in the Catalan capital. In terms of rented office space, 570,000 m2 was leased in Madrid, compared with 300,000 m2 in Barcelona.

Those are the findings of a recent report about the sector compiled by the consultancy firm Knight Frank, which forecasts greater activity in the sector in Madrid this year due to the rotation of assets by the Socimis and funds to fulfil their business plans. In Madrid, more than 40% of the total investment in 2017 involved funds, which, together with the Socimis outperformed other real estate players during the second half of last year.

The notable differences between the two regional capitals have increased as a result of the effects of the political instability caused by the independence drive and the decrease in tourism that has hit Cataluña. The experts consulted highlight that the rate of company creation has decreased in Cataluña since last summer, whilst in the Community of Madrid, the numbers have increased, with more than 185,000 companies registered with the Social Security at the beginning of 2018.

“The Spanish capital continues to be the key location due to its wide range of opportunities. Net absorption has been increasing for several years and rental prices are still very competitive in comparison with the main European centres”, explains Raúl Vicente, Director of Offices at Knight Frank. Nevertheless, the experts indicate the path that the city should take to become a “super city”. “In terms of the major challenges that it will have to overcome, they include mobility, adaptation to the technological revolution that we are living applied to the service of the city, efficiency, access to housing and an office supply that is commensurate with international demand, amongst others”, highlights the report.

The average price of offices in Madrid’s CBD has been rising in recent years. Prices in the capital now exceed €8,000/m2 on average, whilst in Barcelona, they amount to €6,900/m2. The highest price paid last year was for the former Barclays headquarters in Plaza de Colón, which was purchased from Barclays by CBRE Global Investors for €14,000/m2.

Other notable operations stand out including the purchase of Torre Serrano by Infinorsa and the sale of the Isla Chamartín Business Park to Tristan Capital and Zaphir Asset Management for €103 million. Also, the acquisition of the Palacio de Miraflores on the Carrera de San Jerónimo for €60 million by Remer Investment and of the Los Cubos building by Henderson Park and Therus Invest for €52 million (…).

Original story: ABC (by Adrián Delgado)

Translation: Carmel Drake

ECI Sells Building On Plaza Magdalena In Sevilla To Stoneweg

26 October 2017 – Modaes.es

El Corte Inglés is pushing ahead with the divestment of its real estate. The department store group has sold a building on Plaza Magdalena in Sevilla to the fund Stoneweg for €10 million, according to reports by Eje Prime.

The asset, which used to house one of the group’s department stores, until 2012, was constructed in the 1950s. Stoneweg plans to completely renovate the building and turn it into a hotel, as part of its diversification strategy, whereby adding that activity along with logistics to its residential business.

Comprising five floors, the building was inaugurated in October 1959, as the first headquarters of Galerías Preciados and at the time, it was a pioneer in the new techniques of department store selling in Sevilla. A decade later, it closed its doors for a refit to become a furniture store under the same company, which opened a second building in San Pablo around the same time.

El Corte Inglés purchased both buildings in 1995 as part of the operation to acquire the assets of Galerías Preciados in Spain and it maintained it as a centre for the sale of household products and furniture, until five years ago. The Madrilenian group currently operates from another centre in the same square.

In 2016, El Corte Inglés launched a project to sell some of its properties located in various Spanish cities, with a combined valuation of more than €400 million.

One of the most recent operations carried out by the company in this regard was the sale in September of 40% of the company Iberiafon, owner of Torre Serrano in Madrid, for €50 million.

The group closed 2016 with revenues up by 1.9%, to €15,505 million and a net result of €161.86 million, up by 2.4% compared to the previous year.

Original story: Modaes.es (by C. Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake