At the beginning of December, Tehdi-Edouard Babigeon, our Head of Letting and Sales, represented RealCorp at the SIMI (Salon de l’immobilier d’entreprise) at the Palais des Congrès de Paris Porte Maillot, France.
Marketed simply as “le rendez-vous de l’immobilier d’entreprise” or, in English, “The Real Estate Event”, it attracted around 20 000 visitors this year, proving that markets are very interested in Commercial Real Estate. Most sectors are suffering from the recession, but Tehdi observed that Commercial Real Estate seems to be in better health than Residential Real Estate. He returned with this report:
“In participating in SIMI this year on behalf of our clients (landlords and end users), our objectives were to identify business opportunities by meeting international funds based in Paris, and also to gain a better overview of our French neighbours’ real estate sector.
What did we learn?
2011 has been a year of “trompe l’oeil” for the real estate market in France:
- Companies are moving but not always where they had planned to go
- Generally, Supply and Demand are having trouble in meeting; as a result, transactions take 6-9 months as opposed to 3-6months earlier in the year
- The investment market seems to be back, but with a foggy horizon for the future
There is a new conception of the city, of buildings and of office spaces:
- Office buildings with showy architecture are no longer appropriate to the market. Users and developers are looking for green buildings with energy and cost savings.
- Traditional ways of working in companies are changing dramatically, as demonstrated by the rise in businesses that incorporate some form of “coworking”, “a style of work which involves a shared working environment, sometimes an office, yet independent activity”.
Although the Luxembourg market does not work on exactly the same model, we do share some similar effects with our French neigbours.”
Despite the general anxiety in the financial markets, RealCorp remains optimistic for 2012, precisely because we have experience in meeting the kinds of needs that Tehdi describes above. We have a good track record in matching buildings with client requirements, and in finding alternatives when circumstances change. We are aware of the need for careful analysis of potential investments and have the expertise and the patience to support clients in that process. We also have several energy-efficient “green” buildings in our portfolio, including many that are excellently designed for various forms of “co-working” and which are well-located (with easy access to the airport and other transport systems) for commuting managers and cross-border teams.