In Spain, investment in retail has exceeded the total invested in 2021 in the first half of the year by 10.5%. Investment, according to the Real Estate Investment Report prepared by Savills, has been driven by the return of the purchase of volume shopping centers and the return to a typically institutional market.
While supermarkets were the absolute protagonists in 2021, with more than 45% of the total invested in retail products, during the first six months of 2022 the volumes return the prominence to centers, shopping parks and medium-sized surfaces with 47% of the total invested. Supermarkets have monopolized 29% and street stores 24%.
Foreign buyers have been very active throughout the first half of 2022. Excluding street operations, of which 88% of buyers are national, Europeans represent 55% of the total volume invested in retail. The funds account for more than 70% of the purchases, followed by the RE (Real Estate) companies that represent 25% of the total volume purchased.
Luis Espadas, executive director of the retail division at Savills, adds that “we are also seeing new capital with an opportunistic profile reaching the market and traditional value-add investors asking again about retail. There are several operations for the sale of centers and parks in an advanced phase that make us think that the final volume will be in fairly healthy pre-pandemic figures.”
As for mega-operations, surpassing the barrier of 100 million euros, the South African fund Lighthouse Properties bought the Torrecárdenas shopping center in Almería in the first quarter of the year, while the French real estate fund Frey Invest acquired Finestrelles in Esplugues de Llobregat. Below that figure, the same Frey Invest fund bought Parque Mediterráneo in the summer, Citygrove and Burlington sold the Bahía Real park located in Maliaño to Savills IM, Carmila acquired the Rosaleda center from Hispania, and AEW bought the Álcora Plaza center from Goldman Sachs .
In terms of returns, they have remained stable during the second quarter of 2022 since the beginning of the year. Prime shopping centers stand at 5.25%, retail parks at 5%, supermarkets at 4.5%, while high street stores are at 3.4%. Since 2021 and for the first time since 2009, the prime returns for retail parks exceed the values for shopping centers.