Grosvenor has opened an office in Madrid to spearhead its plans to invest €600m (£415m) in Spain over the next five years

Grosvenor already has €900m (£623m) of Spanish assets under management across the retail, office and industrial sectors. It plans to increase this to €1.5bn (£1bn) by 2011 through its existing development pipeline, as well as through new industrial, office, retail warehouse and Town Centre retail investment.

Grosvenor has been working with Spanish developer Grupo Lar for the last five years as Lar Grosvenor, but has now decided to operate independently through its own Madrid office. The existing portfolio will continue to be jointly owned by Grosvenor and Grupo Lar.

Grosvenor also has a 50% shareholding in Spanish shopping centre specialist Sonae Sierra, which will manage its shopping centre assets.

Rafael Avilés has been appointed Spanish managing director and will report to Neil Jones, chief executive for continental Europe. Avilés was a member of the Lar Grosvenor management board and has also worked for Hammerson in Spain.

‘New acquisitions are planned but will depend on the specific opportunities that arise,’ he said. ‘We will invest in projects that fit with our long-term investment strategy and if necessary, we will take our time.’