// Intu sells its Intu Austurias centre in Spain for £245.15m as it continues to try and fix its balance sheet
// Intu Austurias is now owned by ECE European Prime Shopping Centre Fund
// Intu sold another Spanish shopping centre last month, Intu Puerto Venecia, as part of continued efforts to turn around its fortunes
Intu has sold off another one of its Spanish shopping centres as it pushes on with efforts to turn around its fortunes and fix its balance sheet in the UK.
Intu Austurias, located in Oviedo in northern Spain, was sold for €290 million (£245.15 million) to ECE European Prime Shopping Centre Fund.
The transaction of the shopping centre, which attracts nine million visitors annually, is expected to be complete in the next week.
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The news comes a month after Intu offloaded its Intu Puerto Venecia shopping centre in Zaragoza, for €475.3 million (£405 million).
Intu said the latest transaction forms part of its strategy of fixing its balance sheet, which has been adversely impacted by the surge in retail administrations and CVAs in the year or two.
The Austurias transaction will deliver Intu net proceeds of around €85 million after repaying asset-level debt, working capital adjustments and taxation.
The shopping centre giant added that it would use the net proceeds to repay debt with the transaction reducing loan to value by around one per cent.
“Our number one priority is fixing the balance sheet, which includes creating liquidity through disposals,” Intu chief executive Matthew Roberts said.
“This transaction, which along with the disposal of Intu Puerto Venecia, the part-disposal of Intu Derby and other sundry asset sales, brings our total disposals since the start of 2019 to nearly £600 million.”
Last week, news emerged that Intu was reportedly seeking a £1 billion cash injection from investors next month, also to help fix its balance sheet.
The shopping centre operator said it was ”engaged in constructive discussions” with shareholders and potential new investors over the possible equity raise, which would accompany Intu’s full-year results at the end of next month.