Hili Ventures launches €80 million bond for acquisition of Comino Hotel

Comino Hotel valued at over €55 million, to be acquired by Hili Ventures for development into luxury hotel and upmarket bungalows

Hili Ventures has launched an €80 million bond issue, maturing in 2029, through its finance company Hili Finance. The unsecured bonds will be directed to the acquisition of the Comino Hotel, on the island of Comino.

The acquisition of the Comino Hotel and bungalows is being made with a view to developing the site into a mixed-use hospitality project, including a luxury hotel and upmarket serviced bungalows.

The hotel will be operated by HV Hospitality, set up in April 2019, which entered into a share purchase agreement for Kemmuna Limited, the company that owns Comino Hotel and the bungalows in the vicinity of San Niklaw Bay and Santa Marija Bay, for €55 million cash.

Originally the hotel was owned by Ropes Limited, a Tumas Group subsidiary; Chrisanthon PTY of New South Wales; Alf Mizzi & Sons; the Mizzi Organisation’s Consolidated Holdings Ltd; and Festa Limited.

The land at the Comino Hotel was granted by temporary emphyteusis for a period of 150 years in March 1960 (expiring 10 March 2110). In 1989, additional plots were granted on temporary emphyteusis, also expiring on 10 March 2110. A nominal annual ground rent of €11,768 is payable to the Maltese government.

Comino is a Rural Conservation Area and Natura 2000 site, which the island has to be accorded the same level of protection as scheduled property. New developments should therefore be kept to a minimum and directed towards improving existing degraded and disturbed areas.

Hili Ventures’ property valuation report states that in an initial meeting with the Planning Authority it was outlined that current policy would permit the redevelopment of the hotel and bungalows, providing that the proposed total gross floor area remains unchanged.

The unsecured bonds, at a nominal value of €100 per bond issued at par, bear an annual interest rate of 3.8%. €10 million will also be advanced to Cobalt Leasing Ltd to finance the acquisition of new containers to be leased to shipping lines on a long-term basis. The remaining balance will be used to fund group-wide investment opportunities.

Application forms are available from July 30 from authorised financial intermediaries. Subscriptions close on August 20, or earlier if the bond issue is over-subscribed.

Interest on the bonds commences on August 27 and refunds of unallocated monies will be made by September 3. The bonds are expected to be admitted to the Malta Stock Exchange on September 4. Trading is expected to commence on September 5.

Hili Finance Company plc is a subsidiary of Hili Ventures, a group engaged in multi-sited operations with McDonald’s and Apple, logistics, marine & engineering, property, technology, hospitality and leasing. Present in 10 countries in central and Eastern Europe and North Africa with a team of more than 9,000 people, Hili Ventures is a proud partner of CMA CGM, IBM, Konecranes, Lenovo, Microsoft, NCR, Diebold Nixdorf, and many other global brands.

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