DeA Capital, a De Agostini group company, is Italy’s leading alternative asset manager of real estate, private equity and NPLs, with AUM of c €11.9bn at end 2018. The portfolio, including co-investment in funds managed, investment in the asset management platform and direct investment, amounted to c €365m.
Q418 alternative AUM increased to c €11.9bn (end-Q319 c €11.4bn; end-FY17 c €11.7bn), supported by new fund launches. Asset management fees grew strongly, including private equity performance fees (we estimate €2.5m). The year-end net financial position was €100.6m, up from €61.8m at end-FY17 adjusted for €30.5m dividends distributed. During Q418 DeA increased its ownership of DeA Capital Real Estate to 94% from 64.3%, and since the year end has increased its ownership to 100%. The transactions were attractively priced at book value and create a simpler, more flexible and potentially more efficient base from which to expand the real estate platform from Italy into broader Europe. The recent creation of real estate advisory and consultancy subsidiaries in Spain and France are the first steps in this development. End-FY18 NAV per share was €1.84 (end-Q318 €1.83; end-FY17 €1.80 adjusted for DPS paid since), and our last published adjusted NAV per share was unchanged at €1.94.
Low interest rates support demand for alternative assets, while fund maturities and other divestments are supporting cash flow for reinvestment and distributions to shareholders, even after meeting outstanding investment commitments.