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Intu sells Spanish shopping centre

Shopping centre owner Intu has offloaded the largest shopping centre in Spain to Spanish investment group Generali Shopping Centre Fund for €475.3m (£405m). 

Intu Puerto Venecia is in Zaragoza, north-east Spain, and has an annual footfall of 19 million. Intu will bank €237.7m (£203m), and the rest of the sale’s value will go to co-owner the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

The transaction is part of Intu’s strategy to fix its balance sheet. Intu will use the net proceeds to repay debt, with the transaction reducing loan to value by around 1%.

The closing of the transaction is subject to certain completion conditions, including regulatory approvals, and is expected to complete in early 2020.

Intu owns several shopping centres across the UK, including Lakeside in Thurrock and Manchester’s Trafford Centre.

Matthew Roberts, chief executive of Intu, commented: “We are pleased to have successfully concluded this transaction and, as previously discussed, are at advanced stages of negotiations on the disposal of Intu Asturias in northern Spain.

“As we announced at the interim results in July, our number one priority is fixing the balance sheet which includes creating liquidity through disposals. This transaction, which along with the part-disposal of Intu Derby and other sundry asset sales in 2019 brings the year-to-date disposals total to £479m.”

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