Retail investment in Europe halved in H1

The overall volume of retail investment transactions amounted to just €8.3bn for the whole of Europe, a 54% decline on the same period in 2008. However, retail’s share of the total still amounted to 35%, indicating its continuing popularity as an asset class within the overall property sector, a recent Cushman & Wakefield report shows.

“The majority of investment deals in first and second quarter were done in central markets, that included debt swap or the debt has been financed by the provider. The central European markets continue to attract the most shopping center investment deals, while western markets came to a standstill in 2008”, said Mike Rodda, director of retail international investment department at Cushman & Wakefield.

At the end of 2008, Romania had 2,029,000 sqm shopping center space GLA, 94sqm per 1,000 inhabitants. Total shopping center GLA year to date now stands at 164,000 sqm and a further 89,000 sqm expected to be completed in the second half.

“In 2009, seven shopping center were completed in Romania: Grand Arena Bucharest – 44,500 sqm GLA, Galleria Suceava – 10,700 sqm, Real II Constanta – 14,969 sqm, Central Plaza Bacau –6,534 sqm, Galleria Piatra Neamt – 12,200 sqm, Era Shopping Park Oradea –32,400 sqm and Trident Sibiu –14,000 sqm”, said Razvan Gheorghe, Managing Director Cushman & Wakefield Romania.

Three existent shopping centers have been extended: Plaza Romania by 8,500 sqm, Militari Shopping Center by 13,453 sqm, and Iris Titan Shopping Center: by 6,890 sqm.

Cushman & Wakefield is the world’s largest privately held real estate services firm. Founded in 1917, the company has 230 offices across 58 countries and over 15,000 employees. The office in Romania was opened in January 2007 after the takeover of 11-year associated office Activ Consulting.

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