GreekGuru.net acted as programme adviser to the annual Prodexpo conference, Greece's leading real estate gathering, helping make the event a big success.
Organised by Tsomokos Corporate Communications last month, the conference brought together policymakers, CEO, analysts, experts and other top officials who presented their views on the sector's prospects.
Apart from helping shape the programme for the two-day event, GreekGuru.net founder Stelios Bouras coordinated the Executive Breakfast Meeting (above) at the conference in a round table discussion attended by CEO's from Greece's largest real estate companies. Earlier in the month, GreekGuru.net was also media sponsor for the annual Urban Land Institute Greece, Cyprus conference that was held in Athens.
GreekGuru.net offers an array of services that help businesses and conference organisers meet communications targets. In addition to consultancy, we provide writing services for sites, blogs, corporate publications and handle media relations.
Real estate investment companies Prodea, Trastor, Premia and Noval, Hellenic Public Properties (ETAD), developer Dimand, consultants Danos, Hellenic Properties and PwC were among the companies that participated in the discussion.
The key takeaways from the meeting are:
Errikos Arones, CEO of Hellenic Properties, commented on the increased cost of buildings, especially those that are not energy efficient, stressing that there is a lack of quality real estate stock available. He sees key challenges as being the availability of human resources and materials, but also the very high construction costs
Stefanos Vlastos, CEO of ETAD, noted that 28,500 state properties have been encroached upon and that it was necessary to reorganize ETAD to become a catalyst in developing public property. He emphasized that careful steps are being taken on real estate that will contribute to local economies and societies, and that the energy crisis, the European voices of populism and the lack of human resources pose the greatest risk.
Fotis Yoftsios, CEO of Ten Brinke Greece pointed out that there are heightened uncertainties, with the German and Dutch markets in recession and investors holding back due to a gradual and large increase in interest rates and low yields. He added that calm moves, foresight and wisdom are needed in real estate choices.
Nikos Dimtsas, Chief Investment Officer of Dimand estimated that the market will diversify into quality and second-rate properties, which will drastically lose value. He emphasized that the total operating cost is of particular importance to the user of a building, saying that bioclimatic buildings have large appeal with large companies, for which savings and ESG play an important role.
Sakis Exarchos, President and CEO of Vantage Towers Greece said that there is great uncertainty for tomorrow, saying that his company continues to invest in three axes. He went on to add that the biggest asset sold to investors is the location of the asset.
Pavlos Zekkos, CEO of American Appraisal (Hellas) Ltd, said that geopolitical risks are increasing and there is intense uncertainty in Europe. He noted that at the current time lending rates are too high, weighing on real estate as he expressed his optimism that Greece can be the exception to broader downturn.
Maximos Kalatzis, CEO, Makt commented on the uncertainty created by the tensions with Turkey, forecasting that it may affect economic developments in Greece. He also said that the Greek market has an advantage, that it has many indifferent, colorless buildings offering potential in property that can be improved and developed.
Giorgos Mantzavinatos, CEO of QRes estimated that we have 12 months of foggy conditions ahead and that no one can predict if and when the war will stop. He underlined that fortunately in Greece there is a lag in absorbing international crises, adding that in the coming months we will see purchases and mergers between real estate companies.
Ioannis Orfanos, Partner of Arbitrage RE emphasized that Greece lacks real estate in the alternative sector, such as data centers, logistics and large resorts, and emphasized the need for projects to be medium-term and not with an eye on the next year only.
Yannis Paraskevopoulos, General Manager of Danos – BNP Paribas Real Estate argued that Greece is in a different phase from the rest of Europe, where they expect a recession immediately, noting that in the first half of the year, investments amounting to 650 million euros were completed. He added that we have to watch how the market will develop and how long the incoming crisis will last.
Tasos Kazinos, CEO of Trastor AEEAP said that interest rates are rising too fast, in something which unfortunately is not just short term. He estimated that in this new landscape, investors will have more options, demand in the real estate market will be affected, there will be a shift of investment interest to safe havens and that there will be more targeted investments in specific real estate such as green buildings.
Kostas Markazos, Managing Director of Premia R.E.I.C. characterized as certain the recession in Europe, which will also affect the real estate market. Unlike other speakers, he estimated that our country will not be spared due to the diversity of the market, adding that we should be neither optimistic nor pessimistic, as every crisis creates opportunities.
Dika Agapitidou, General Manager of JLL – Athens Finance said that inflation is not a more important factor, but there is a distinction of the impact on households and businesses. She characterized offices and industrial buildings as being the safest investments and added that retail is the first sector to be affected by the recession or talks of a recession.
Panagiotis Kapetanakos, CEO of Noval Property, said that in the last two months there has been a de-escalation of construction costs, which had skyrocketed in the previous period. He noted that the last two years have seen an increase in rents in sustainable and bioclimatic buildings, due to strong demand and low supply. He added that investors should be careful and prepare to limit the risk.
Lila Pateraki, Chief Real Estate Services Officer of doValue Greece spoke about the prospects of the real estate market with bad loans, saying that approximately 25,000 properties will be put on the market in the next five years through auctions. She also said that these properties will have a price much lower than what it would take for someone to build from scratch, and she spoke about the different way auctions are now being held.
Panos Charalambopoulos, CEO of Solum|PY Gloval, Advisory Board RICS Greece underlined that properties with solid foundations will also outpace inflation, estimating that the prices of prime properties will not be affected, but less quality properties will definitely have a problem. He said that it is unlikely that we will soon see a return to 2% inflation and stressed that much will depend on how long the inflationary trend will last, when we will return to normality and what that normality will be.
Aris Karytinos, CEO of PRODEA Investments pointed out that today's crisis is an excellent opportunity to highlight the need for sustainability in buildings. He pointed out that E (for ESG) is here to stay, adding that green buildings are the new window to the market. He spoke of a lack of supply from such buildings, unlike old properties, which are too many, raising questions about how this large volume will be absorbed in the market.
Nikos Koritsas, Managing Partner of the Koutalidis Law Firm noted that financing now has green preconditions, explaining that there is a regulatory framework that classifies environmentally eligible activities so that they can be financed.
George Kormas, Economist and Real Estate Professional argued that anyone who does not walk the path of ESG has no future, saying that without ESG features there is no access to finance. He also highlighted the need to deal with the so-called green washing.
Lila Tsitsogiannopoulou, Director of Real Estate Advisory/Deals at PwC Greece noted that the energy crisis is also an opportunity for ESG, adding that the sustainability profile of a real estate company is based on ESG practices.