Drago snaps up media properties in Spain

The private equity real estate firm is set to become landlord to Spain's largest media organizations after signing a deal to buy three buildings owned by communications group, Grupo Prisa.

Drago Real Estate Partners has signed a deal to acquire three buildings in Madrid and Barcelona from communications group, Grupo Prisa.

The €315 million ($493 million) deal will leave Drago landlord to some of Spain’s best-known media companies, including the country's most widely-circulated daily newspaper, El País.

According to a statement, Drago will lease the properties back to Grupo Prisa. The Madrid properties include Gran Vía 32, headquarters of Grupo Prisa, and a property in Miguel Yuste Street, headquarters of the Spanish newspaper, El País.  Drago also acquired Caspe 6 – 20 in Barcelona, the headquarters of Cadena Ser and Radio Barcelona. The building in Gran Vía also has various commercial spaces, with tenants such as Zara, Mango and H&M.

Drago Real Estate Partners is managed by Mare Nostrum Capital Managers, and invests solely in real estate on the Iberian Peninsula, including Madrid, Barcelona and Lisbon. Mare Nostrum has already built up a significant portfolio of residential and commercial properties and is led by Luis Iglesias and Oleguer Pujol.

Last November, Drago unveiled a joint venture with Sun Capital and Pearl Group, a Sun Capital-backed insurance business, to acquire 1,152 Banco Santander branches in Spain for €2.04 billion ($2.9 billion).

“From the beginning we saw a major potential in this process as a high quality portfolio including also rental contracts with renowned retail companies such as Zara, Mango, H&M and Grupo Prisa itself,” said a Mare Nostrum spokesman of the Grupo Prisa deal, which comprises 71,873 square meters and includes 344 parking spaces.  Financing has been provided by Banco Santander and Bayerische Landesbank.