El Corte Inglés Closes its Biggest Sale of Buildings To Date for €160M

18 December 2018 – Iberian Property

To continue its policy of reducing debt through the sale of real estate assets, El Corte Inglés has closed its biggest sale of buildings so far, receiving €160 million for its centres in Parquesur and La Vaguada, both in Madrid.

Although the group will continue to operate in these commercial centres on a tenant basis, the properties will now be owned by Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (URW). Thus, it is also selling the stores that it had in the interior, where URW already was co-owner. The Parquesur store measures 20,000 m2 and the La Vaguada store spans 20,200 m2, as reported by Cinco Días based on data from ‘La Asociación Española de Centros y Parques Comerciales’ (the Spanish Association for Shopping Centres and Retail Parks).

Through this transaction, El Corte Inglés is continuing its strategy of divesting non-strategic real estate assets. Thus, in 2018, it has carried out several sales, specifically, it sold two assets in Madrid to the Inbest Socimi in the summer for €100 million and another two assets in Valencia in October for about €90 million.

The value of the URW’s properties in Spain, not including this latest transaction, amounts to €3,823 million.

Original story: Iberian Property (by Jaqueline Cardoso)

Edited by: Carmel Drake

Castellana Properties Incorporates Unibail’s Shopping Centres into its Portfolio

28 November 2018 – Eje Prime

Castellana Properties is now the ninth largest Socimi in Spain. The company, which is controlled by the South African fund Vukile, has doubled the value of its portfolio to €900 million by incorporating the firm Morzal Property into the fold. Morzal is the vehicle through which Vukile purchased four shopping centres from the giant Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield in July.

The General Shareholders’ Meeting of Castellana approved the purchase of 100% of Morzal at the same price as the initial operation was closed, according to Eje Prime. The incorporation of the company, which paid Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield €490 million in July for its four assets, has been carried out through a capital increase subscribed by a non-monetary contribution of Morzal’s share capital, attributing a value of €6 per share to the shares of Castellana Properties.

Following this incorporation, the Socimi has increased its portfolio with the following shopping centres: Los Arcos (Sevilla), Bahía Sur (Cádiz), El Faro (Badajoz) and Vallsur (Valladolid). In total, the manager is adding a gross leasable area (GLA) of 121,300 m2 to reach a total of 318,622 m2 distributed all over Spain.

The market capitalisation of the company now amounts to €460 million, whilst the average value of its assets has increased from €27 million to €48 million, and its vacant space has decreased from 3.3% to 1.8%.

“The acquisition of these four shopping centres significantly strengthens our portfolio and reaffirms our commitment to the retail real estate sector in Spain”, said Alfonso Brunet, CEO of Castellana Properties.

Similarly, in terms of the future, Vukile has the commitment to inject another €200 million into Castellana over the coming years, as revealed by Eje Prime. In April, the fund subscribed an agreement with the Socimi to undertake capital increases for that maximum value in the event that it does not find the necessary partners to continue buying retail parks and shopping centres with, “given the need for financing to undertake such investments”.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake