Tag Archives: development

Plaza Centers sells “Prague 3”

Well now, this is interesting:

“Plaza Centers announces it has successfully completed the sale of 100% of its interest in a vehicle which holds the interest in the Prague 3 project (“Prague 3”), a logistics and commercial center in the third district of Prague. Earlier this year, Plaza completed its successful application to change the zoning use of Prague 3 to a residential scheme. The transaction values the asset at circa €11 million and, as a result, further to related bank financing and other balance sheet adjustments, Plaza has received cash proceeds of net circa €7.5 million.

Ran Shtarkman, President and CEO of Plaza Centers N.V., said:
“Less than two months after our first exit in India, we are pleased to announce the sale of our holding in Prague 3 in the Czech Republic. The sale is in line with our strategy and disposal programme of deleveraging and reallocating realised capital from stabilised completed projects and non-core assets to the core yielding assets across our portfolio.”

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Landing Amazon

Does anybody really know where Amazon is going? The Czech industrial sector hasn’t been getting much sleep lately, what with  everyone’s falling over themselves to woo the world’s largest on-line retailer. The site will have to be ready to go almost immediately, and with 30 ha rumored to be needed, there can’t be that much choice.

You’d think that choice would be made simpler depending on exactly which market is supposed to be served by the huge shed (rumored at 100,000 sqm). Will it service CEE and Austria? Then Brno would make sense (and might explain some recruitment sounding letters going out to students there). Will it serve Germany? Then surely, it will have to be placed west of Prague. But it will need quite a lot of people as well, so it’s unlikely to be a remote site.

If you have a hint, or a clue, drop us a line. Anonymous tips are always welcome in the tip box.

Ales Vobruba and Ott & Co. SA resign from Orco board

At the same time Orco Property Group’s board of directors welcomed new board members David Ummels (Astin Capital Management) and Benjamin Colas (MTone), it was bidding adieu to OPG veteran Ales Vobruba as well as to Ott & Co. SA.

“The board thanked them for their decision and validated the cooptation,” read the statement.

Ott & Co. is the personal holding company of Jean-Francois Ott, who stays on as president of the board.

Ales Vobruba is to stay on as deputy CEO and MD of Orco in Central Europe, and the company has vigorously denied any validity to reports that he was no longer at the company at all.

Ummels and Colas have won their seats as part of the deleveraging process at Orco, as bonds were traded in for equity. The shift in the structure of the board, says Orco, reflects the shift in structure of the shareholders. Mtone for example currently holds 9.8% of Orco (9.9% in voting rights). Orco also revealed that Credit Suisse Securities now holds a 4.2% stake in the company. Ott & Co. SA currently controls just 0.7% of OPG. (details here)

The make-up of the 12 member board now is:

-J.F. Ott, Nicolas Tommasini who are described as “executive members representing the management of the Company”.

-5 “independent members” (Silvano Pedretti, Guy Wallier, Bernard Kleiner, Alexis Juan and Robert Coucke)

-And 5 non-executive members “representing the shareholders” (Bertrand Des Pallieres, Gabriel Lahyani, Richard Lonsdale-Hands, Benjamin Colas and David Ummels)

Caelum begins ParkLake Plaza construction

The Romanian market may be hurting, but it’s certainly producing a decent number of retail schemes. Not only are around seven scheduled to open this fall, but another one has just gotten underway. Caelum Development has assigned Apolodor SRL and Edrasis – C. Psallidas SA to begin foundation work on Park LakePlaza, which will be constructed in the eastern Bucharest neighborhood called Titan. As is Caelum’s way, the scheme doesn’t lack for ambition, with 67,000 sqm of GLA envisioned for 200 stores. Construction is expected to take 30 months. Cinema City, a Cora hypermarket, and Pure Fitness Center are among the tenants already signed up, and the developer claims that 50% of the space has either signed leases or has heads of terms agreed.

CTP scores new development loans

CTP has continue to expand its financing base by agreeing loan terms with VUB/Intesa for a €20m facility for the development of its newest venture, CTPark Mlada Boleslav. The industrial investor is hoping to take advantage of the growing importance the city has on the European auto manufacturing scene. The developer also concluded new loan agreements with CSOB (€12m) and with Volksbank Real Estate (€8m) for the construction of new projects for clients like ViskoTeepak, ABB, Raben/Wincanton and Kühne & Nagel.CTP now has 225,000 sqm of construction underway and has €194m in new financing secured.

Penta keen on Marasyk station re-development

Penta Investments is currently finalizing negotiations with the consortium behind the planned re-development of the Masaryk Railway station area in the center of Prague. This interest in gaining a share in the huge scheme makes all the more sense given that Penta already has a project of its own, Česká Typografie, just across the street. A replacement for the financial heavyweight ING was always going to be needed after the Dutch pulled out of the railway scheme in May 2010, in line with its general withdrawal from real estate development. Jan Hromádka, chairman of the board at the Masaryk Station Development (MSD), claims Czech Railways should sell the land to the consortium at a price agreed back in 2004.

ECE opens Árkád Szeged

ECE has braved the choppy consumer market waters by opening a shopping mall Szeged. At a time when many won’t buy anything in CEE outside Poland or Prague, developing in a secondary city in Hungary shows considerable confidence in one’s project. The €100m investment produced a 41,000 sqm shopping center with a mix of local retailers along with ECE’s standard fare of top international brand names. It’s been built on the site of a former hemp-spinning factory and retains architectural elements from the old facility. The investor is ECE and the Otto family. Development work on the project began in 2005, but construction didn’t get under way until 2010.