Warimpex Finanz- und Beteiligungs-Aktiengesellschaft (Warimpex) has announced the partial sale of its hotel portfolio to the Thai investor U City Public Company Limited (U City).
The transaction includes eight hotel participations – two of which are partially (50 percent) owned by UBM Development AG (UBM) – which comprise approximately 50 percent of Warimpex’s total real estate assets and which have a property value of approximately €180 million (excluding the stakes of UBM in that portfolio). This amount also corresponds to the overall financial consideration, consisting of a purchase price for the shares in the respective property companies as well as the assumption of shareholder loans and the property companies’ bank financing liabilities. The purchase price is in line with recent valuation opinions from June 2016 by independent property appraisers.
Warimpex expects from the transaction a positive earnings contribution, which is expected to range between €15 million and €20 million. The sale will increase the equity ratio of Warimpex to about 25 percent. The purchase contract is still pending subject to the fulfilment of the standard closing conditions for such real estate transactions. Warimpex expects closing to occur by summer 2017.
“Since 2015, the transaction markets in CEE for hotel investments have become increasingly attractive again. We are taking advantage of this positive momentum. The current sale will broaden our scope of action significantly and we are thus well prepared for new projects,” said Warimpex CEO Franz Jurkowitsch. “We will use the proceeds from the sale to improve our capital structure and for new developments – potentially together with U City as a future partner, who takes a step into the CEE region for the first time. We continue to see our future in hotel and office developments in CEE and Russia, as the markets have matured and are developing further.”
Poland will remain one of Warimpex’s core markets with current development projects in Łodź and Krakow, and Warimpex is currently weighing several options for further investment plans in the country.
Also, Amber Privatstiftung and Bocca Privatstiftung, the two core shareholders of Warimpex, have signed an agreement to sell all their shares in VIENNA INTERNATIONAL Hotelmanagement Aktiengesellschaft (Vienna House), the hotel management company which manages all of the sold eight hotel participations, to U City. The closing is also expected by summer 2017.
The hotel portfolio that was sold includes the following hotels:
• Czech Republic
Vienna House Diplomat Prague
angelo by Vienna House Pilsen (50 percent share)
andel’s by Vienna House Łodź
andel’s by Vienna House Krakow (operating company)
Vienna House Easy Chopin Krakow
angelo by Vienna House Katowice (50 percent share)
Vienna House Amber Baltic Międzyzdroje
angelo by Vienna House Bucharest
All of the hotels are operated by Vienna House, which will continue to be responsible for the management after the sale.