Mon, 30 November 2015
Cambridge, with its fiercely entrepreneurial university and thriving technology and science scene, draws professionals from all over the globe.
Alongside its shared bid for devolved powers from Whitehall, the city is ripe for development.
At Estates Gazette's Cambridge Question Time, held at Cambridge University's Clare College on November 27, industry heavyweights agreed Cambridge needed a leader with a clear vision for the city and a strategy to cope with future expansion.
Mike Shaw, head of national strategic development at Savills, was adamant that full devolution was the way forward.
But Peter Seaborn, planning partner at Mills & Reeve, said this would be difficult to achieve without the city first appointing a single point of contact.
Chris Goldsmith, managing director at Turnstone Estates, agreed.
With office deal volumes in Cambridge down by one-fifth on last year, the debate also covered how the city could preserve its heritage centre while meeting demand for modern, flexible offices and housing.
Cambridge Question Time was held in association with Savills, Mills & Reeve and CRS.
The full panel included:
Wed, 25 November 2015
Thirty days on from announcing its partnership with US-based lee & Associates, Gerald Eve is on the hunt for more collaborations.
Simon Prichard, senior partner at Gerald Eve said the company will be looking at the America’s, South America, Europe and Asia. “We would like to bed in this relationship [with Lee] and get deal flow in the next 12 months. [But], Canada is an important market that needs to be looked at… it’s a vanilla market and we should be there.”
Tue, 24 November 2015
The next London mayor must tackle the housing crisis, but not at the expense of office space in the capital, according to Dan Van Gelder, chairman of the Westminster Property Association.
EG caught up with Van Gelder at the 2015 WPA annual lunch where the group launched its “Mayoral Manifesto”, a series of recommendations for the next Mayor of London.
More than 1,500 property professionals descended on Grosvenor House Hotel for the event which featured Lord William Hague of Richmond as speaker.
Thu, 19 November 2015
EG Question Time: Industry leaders at EG’s London Question Time agreed that there was more pressure than ever to provide affordable homes to accommodate London’s growing population and attract top talent.
With current delivery rates of 30,000 homes a year falling short of the 50,000 mayoral target, panellists acknowledged the urgent need to maximise provision by considering previously overlooked areas.
“We have to start innovating,” said Richard Cook, head of residential at Lend Lease, at the event hosted at Land Securities’ recently completed New Ludgate, EC4, scheme.
“We have to look at the communities which we build in and listen to people. You can’t have any one silver bullet but there are lots of good initiatives coming through. The political consensus is that there is a need for housing and we need to turn that into real leadership through central and local government and the GLA.
“As developers we need economic stability. If we have all our ducks in a row, there is a good chance of meeting that target going forward.”
Kaela Fenn-Smith, head of leasing at Land Securities, added that infrastructure needed to happen at a faster pace.
And Bobby Hashemi, founder of Pizza Union and Coffee Republic, warned that a lack of affordable housing would also have a detrimental effect on restaurants and retail, saying the idea of a London restaurant-based business with staff living outside the M25 was “pushing it”.
The event was sponsored by Savills, Mills & Reeve and Conveyancing Risk Solutions.
Listen here to the full debate.
The panel included
Direct download: Estates_Gazette_Audio_Recording_-_audacity_edited.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:14pm UTC
Wed, 18 November 2015
Arabian Centres, developer and operator of shopping centres in Saudi Arabia, today launched a campaign at MAPIC to promote the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) as a prime market for international retailers seeking to enter or expand into the Middle East.
Announcing the campaign at MAPIC in Cannes, Arabian Centres chief executive Simon Wilcock said: “The KSA Advantage is a call to action for international retailers who want to expand into one of the highest-growth retail markets not just in the Middle East, but anywhere in the world today.
“We have launched the campaign at MAPIC to raise the debate on why Saudi Arabia should be part of every international retailer’s growth plans.”
Read more news from MAPIC here.
Fri, 13 November 2015
The 101,000m sq Mall of Scandinavia in Stockholm opened it’s doors to the public yesterday. The centre is Sweden’s largest shopping centre and one of three owned by Unibail-Rodamco but managing director Lars-Arke Tollemark, said Stockholm was still undershopped and there was room for more. “The growth in Stockholm so big so that we could easily open another one on the southboard, as the Mall of Scandinavia is located north and then in the furture there could be other ones not necessarily 100, 000 sq ft,” he said.
Thu, 5 November 2015
The term hotdesking is perceived negatively by workers and could put them off joining a company.
With land at a premium and central London office rents rising, companies are increasingly trying to maximise their existing office space through desk sharing and more innovative use of office space.
The shift towards flexible working is inevitable, but terminology is critical, agreed experts at an Estates Gazette round table about finding value in a changing London.
“Agility has a virtuous interpretation, hotdesking has the opposite,” said Jim Herbert, chief executive of Aon Risk Solutions, which recently moved its UK headquarters to the Cheesegrater in Leadenhall, EC3, because the large floorplates allowed them to create a sleek and efficient working environment.
“Based on people’s preconceptions around hotdesking, before you even move to a new office, you’re going to lose people,” he added. “We spent three and a half years explaining to people before we moved what the benefits of their sacrifices would be.”
John Slade, chief executive of BNP Paribas Real Estate, said despite the trend for lower occupation of offices there were still “forces going the other way towards traditional working”.
His comments were backed up by Dan Bayley, the firm’s head of office leasing who said that “not everyone is trying to push people into the smallest holes.”
“You do still have at the other end the Googles of this world where it’s all about growth but the finance director isn’t driving things, it’s the business development teams and they are taking buildings initially where they are not rolling around like peas in a drum, but they’ve got a lot of space because they know they’re going to keep growing.”
The round table was hosted in partnership with BNP Paribas Real Estate.
Look out for the full coverage in Estates Gazette next week.
Mon, 2 November 2015
MIPIM UK 2015: The key lesson to learn from the US multi-family housing sector is a focus on service, delegates were told at MIPIM UK.
Allan Collet, senior consultant at M&G Real Estate, said the customer comes first, second and third.
Alex Notay, policy director at the Urban Land Institute, said: “It’s about service, it’s about adaptability. In the US, they are always looking to be right on the ball about what customer service is to retain them.”
Amenities and services will in turn help improve tenant retention and drive income returns.
Collett said: “We are an income investor, we look at the amenities to think what they will add to our net operating income. Customer services is all about improving their experience so we can prove our returns to investors.”
However, John German, director of residential investment at Invesco, warned that the UK was still a long way behind the US model and that developers should start simply.
“The key point we need to remember is that in the US it has been a 25-35-year evolution. It is a fully established market with a clear idea of what customers want,” said German. “From my perspective, start with a base level that people will buy into and ramp it up.”
But Wayne Vandenburg, chairman and chief executive of TVO Group in the US, was less cautious, saying: “Build it and they will come.”
He added: “The people who are going to rent this stuff are very aware of what is available in other parts of the world. There is no reason this product cannot be replicated in the UK and leased up.”