First Lincoln Road, now Madrid? Europe’s richest man buys office tower for $550M

Seller was embattled Abu Dhabi tycoon Khadem al-Qubaisi

Oct.October 03, 2016 10:30 AM

Zara owner Amancio Ortega is no stranger to grabbing headlines for high-profile real estate deals. Last year, he blew the roof off Miami Beach’s retail market by picking up a chunk of Lincoln Road for $370 million.

Now, the billionaire just closed his $550 million purchase of the 45-story Cepsa Tower, an iconic office building in Madrid, Spain.

According to Reuters, which cited an anonymous source, Ortega bought the tower from embattled investment tycoon Khadem al-Qubaisi, who was recently arrested by Abu Dhabi officials for his alleged role in a corruption scandal involving the 1Malaysia Development Berhad.

Designed by Lord Norman Foster and built in 2008, the tower is the second tallest building in all of Spain. It has roughly 605,000 square feet of leasable space, so the deal breaks down to $909 per foot. The building is named after its primary tenant Cepsa, a Spanish energy firm.

The deal is part of Ortega’s plan to grow a real estate empire, a goal he’s been actively working toward over the past year. Reuters reported that the billionaire has picked up choice properties in New York, Seoul, London and Madrid. Last year, he made landfall in Miami Beach’s retail market when he bought an entire block of Lincoln Road for $370 million.

Forbes pegs Ortega’s net worth at $78.4 billion, making him the world’s second-richest man behind Bill Gates, who commands $81.5 billion.

Pontegadea Inmobiliaria, Ortega’s Spain-based real estate firm, now holds nearly $6.8 billion worth of assets worldwide. [Reuters]Sean Stewart-Muniz

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