Categories: Industry News

OHL raises stake in PokerStars’ €500-million Madrid project

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OHL Desarrollos, the leading construction company in Spain, has acquired a 32.5 per cent stake in the Centro Canalejas Madrid development project, raising the company’s stakes to 50 per cent. The remaining 50 per cent of the project is owned by the PokerStars founder Mark Scheinberg.

The complex will have hotel and residential areas as well as retail space and multiple food and beverage outlets. It is scheduled to open by the end of 2019. The project is located next to the Puerta del Sol square in Madrid and includes buildings formerly occupied by the Banco Santander.

In a Monday filing to Spain’s National Securities Market Commission (Comisión Nacional del Mercado de Valores), OHL said that it would pay €50 million for the 32.5 per cent stake in the development with an option for an additional €10-million payment in the event of gains if it sells its stake subsequently.

Excluding the newly added holding, OHL originally owned 17.5 per cent in the scheme. The acquisition marks Villar Mir’s official exit from the project and provides OHL with a 50 per cent stake, the other 50 per cent being owned by Mr. Scheinberg, who joined the project last February through his company Mohari Limited.

Development work commenced in 2014 and the complex is now expected to open doors in late 2019. It will feature a 200-room Four Seasons-operated hotel, which will mark the Canadian chain’s entry into the Spanish hospitality market, a residential area, which will, too, be operated by Four Seasons.

The property is expected to create 4800 direct and indirect jobs and has been touted as one aiming to bring revitalisation to the area and protect the historic and cultural heritage of the buildings it will include. In fact, the risks the project might pose to the integrity of the area have been one of the main reasons why it has been contested heavily by a number of heritage defense groups.

Mr. Scheinberg, who together with his father, Isai, founded PokerStars in the 2000s and then sold it to Canada’s Amaya for nearly $5 billion, entered the Centro Canalejas Madrid scheme in February 2017. The businessman, whose net worth is estimated at $4.8 billion (Forbes: Real Time Net Worth), paid €225 million for a 50 per cent stake in the endeavour. The deal marks his first foray into the Spanish real estate market, which seems to be gradually returning its mojo after the 2008 property bubble burst that saw property prices collapse overnight and shatter Spain’s economy like a massive earthquake.



Source: European Gaming Industry News

Zoltan Tundik

After starting out as an affiliate in 2009 and developing some recognized review portals, I have moved deeper into journalism and media. My experience has lead me to move into the B2B sector and write about compliance updates and report around the happenings of the online and land based gaming sector.

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