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Eston International. the Hungarian associate of Savills, hosted their annual commercial property conference in Budapest. The audience had the opportunity to chat about the latest trends of the sector with the hosts and speakers of the event: Adrjan Salamon, CEO of Eston International and Chriss Gillum, Head of Offices Regional Investment Advisory EMEA, Savills. As Mr. Salamon explained: “The Budapest property market continues to be very attractive and keeps delivering new records in many aspects. Following the record investment volume of 2018, ~EUR 2 bn we see prime yields reaching new, record low, levels in all main sectors: a CBD office building has been recently transacted at 4.9%. Budapest office and logistics vacancy rates bottomed at 5.9% and 2% respectively and class A rents are increasing dynamically in both segments. Investors also perceive the current situation as appealing and a bigger expansion of investment volume is hindered by the narrow supply of prime products.”
Commercial property investment activity exceeded €8bn across Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania in the first three quarters of 2019, 54% above the five year average, according to Savills latest research report. Investment turnover in CEE has been rising steadily since 2013, by 24% pa on average, reflecting increasing investor confidence in the region, underpinned by above EU average economic expansion, falling unemployment and growing consumerism.
Poland, as the largest economy, accounts for 46% of the total GDP of the five countries and has captured 56% of the investment activity in the first nine months of the year with over €4.5bn. The Czech Republic saw transaction turnover reach €2.36bn, about one third of the total, while Hungary and Romania accounted for 6% of the total turnover each and Slovakia for 3%.
Historically, cross border investors have been the strongest players in the region. German, UK and Austrian investors would traditionally dominate these markets accounting for over half of the activity. Over the past three years the share of US and German investors has dropped and the markets witnessed significant inflows from South Africa (14% in 2018) and Asia (12% in 2018). Most notably in the first nine months of 2019, Korean investors increased their share of activity from 4% last year to 14%. Recent deals involving South Korean capital include the sale of an Amazon warehouse in Prague, with Savills advising the buyer.
Competition for the best assets has caused a fast yield compression over the past few quarters in the region. The average prime CBD yield in the five countries was down to 5.26% in Q3 19, 28 bps lower than last year and 12 bps below the previous quarter. Prime CBD office yields are lowest in Prague at 3.9% followed by Warsaw (4.5%) and Budapest (4.9%), while higher yields of 5.75% and 7% can still be achieved in Bratislava and Bucharest respectively.
Chris Gillum, Head of Offices Regional Investment Advisory EMEA, Savills, says: “Offices continue to be the most attractive asset class for investment into CEE, accounting for over 60% of the
investment volume in the first nine months of the year, a strong rise from 45% over the same period in 2018.
“We have seen an increasing willingness of international capital to enter the region, led by the comparative access to good quality product and healthy fundamentals, explaining the sector’s strong performance which we expect will continue to attract investors well into 2020. For example, in October, Corporate Finance House Group, a Middle Eastern investor, acquired the holding structure owning Day Tower office building in Bucharest, its first investment in the country, with Savills advising the buyer.”
Occupier take-up levels across the respective CEE capitals have been rising by 9% pa on average over the past five years, pushing the average vacancy rate across Prague, Budapest, Bucharest and Warsaw to 6.9% compared to 13.8% in 2014 and half a percentage point below last year. Prague has the lowest availability of offices with 4.6% vacancy, Budapest follows at 5.9%, Bucharest at 8.0% and Warsaw at 8.2%.
Eri Mitsostergiou, Director, European Research, Savills, adds: “Oxford Economics forecasts that Warsaw (2nd), Budapest (5th), Prague (6th) and Bucharest (9th) will be amongst the ten fastest growing European cities over the next five years with 2.6% average annual GDP growth, versus a European average of 1.9%.
“As supply of prime product becomes tighter, investment volumes for 2019 are projected to be about 5-10% below last year’s levels. We believe that there is more space for yield compression, especially in the prime logistics segment. Some further yield hardening is also likely in the prime office segments of Warsaw and Bucharest in particular, while yields should stabilise in Prague. The retail segment is expected to witness a stabilisation of yields and some softening trends are already evident. However, growing retail sales should support the performance of the best assets and drive demand for logistics space.”
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ESTON International assisted in finding a new HQ for the tech-giant
The US-based LabCorp life sciences company, whose drug development segment is known as Covance, successfully completed the acquisition of Chiltern in 2017. The aim was to strengthen their position as a global life sciences company with leading diagnostics and drug development businesses. A change of this size in a company’s life requires office expansions, change management and relocation. The two companies, Chiltern and Covance, were initially located in Allee Corner and Canada Square. Neither of these locations were able to fulfill the requirements after the merger. As a best option, the two companies decided move to a new joint location that offered a larger office area and a higher level of service and ESTON International was the partner selected to identify the new location. The optimal solution was the Residence Offices situated in District II. The property was chosen due to the excellent location, the level of service, and the leasable area, all of which perfectly suited the client. The move-in to the new 600 sq m office was completed in March 2019. The Residence Office Buildings belong to the LFPI Group that represented on the Hungarian market by FLE GmbH.
Lendületben az irodapiac – derül ki az ESTON új kutatásából
A budapesti bérirodák piacán dinamikus kereslet-bővülésnek lehettünk tanúi az elmúlt három évben. A szakértők szerint ennek még nincs vége.
2018-ban rekord szintre emelkedett a budapesti bérirodák iránti kereslet: az összes kiadott terület meghaladta az 530 ezer négyzetmétert; erre korábban csak 2015-ben volt példa. Piaci szereplők osztják a véleményt, hogy a növekedés dinamikája szükségszerűen csökken a közeljövőben, de a részleteket nézve úgy látszik, a coworking irodák új lendületet adhatnak a kereslet bővülésének.
Salamon Adorján, az ESTON International Zrt. vezérigazgatója szerint a nagyobb szolgáltatók már jelen vannak a budapesti irodapiacon, de a verseny a jövőben tovább éleződik. „Tapasztalataink szerint az Egyesült Államokban és a Nyugat Európában már bevált formula itthon is egyre nagyobb népszerűségnek örvend, és a korábban 1500-2000 négyzetmétert kereső szolgáltatók ma már jóval nagyobb, akár 4-5 ezer négyzetéteres bérleményeket keresnek operációjuk biztosítására. Közismert, hogy a jelenlegi piaci helyzet nem igazán kedvez a nagyobb bérlőknek, hiszen mozgásterük elsősorban a még építés alatt álló irodaházakra korlátozódik.” A szakember szerint lenne igény arra, hogy Budapest dinamikusabban zárkózzon fel a nyugati trendekhez, hiszen egyre több cég ismeri fel, hogy hatékonyságának növeléséhez a munkavállalói igények kiszolgálásán át vezet az út. A coworking irodaterek jellemzően elsődleges lokációkon, kiválóan megközelíthető épületekben találhatók, ahol az irodai munka mindig újszerű, igényes és változatos környezetben zajlik. A kulcs a rugalmasság, a legfőbb felhasználók lendületes start-up vállalkozások, vagy akár multinacionális nagyvállalatok, ahol sok tevékenységet projekt-feladatként delegálnak.
Bővebben az alábbi kutatásból olvashat a jelenlegi iroda-, ipari-, és befektetési piac helyzetéről:
The American owned HortonWorks has recently extended their office lease in the CBD in Central Udvar. The tenant representation team of ESTON International supported the California based data software developer company from Santa Clara.
ESTON started the cooperation with HortonWorks in 2016 and the advisor company was really glad to work with them again. „We are happy that the „band” (the team dealing with the real estate matters) was reunited again. Because of their growing clientele they started to run a bigger operation and it resulted in an office size increase as well” – told Tamas Pal, Head of Office Agency from Eston. „It ment a lot and made the process easier that we have worked together with AddVal before which has been responsible for the letting of the building. Their professional attitude ensured the new Landord about the serious willingness of the Tenant regarding the lease extension and expansion”.
AddVal’s Leasing Manager Rita Szabo said: „We are really satisfied when one of our Tenants extending their office lease in the building that we lease and manage. It is a great recognition of our efforts.
„In the current office lease environment it’s very challenging to secure the requested office space for an expansion but Eston did their best for the sake of HortonWorks” – continued Tamas Pal, Head of Office Agency at Eston International. HortonWorks started with one level lease in the building and now they are on 3 levels after expanding their operation.
The ESTON Tenant Rep team represented HortonWorks for the second time. Now and then Eston worked together with the American advisor; Savills Studley helping their Client together. An assignment like this is always really interesting because apart from the local tasks the consultants need to resolve the time zone differences which requires a great flexibility from all parties. In this particular case we were lucky that the consultants and the landlord team have been well established so the earlier mentioned „band” expression is a very correct expression. We can achieve the targets together with the band!
Office market report:
Four new office buildings were delivered to the Budapest office market in the third quarter of 2018, totalling 110,970 sq m. The largest of the completions took place in the Non-central Pest subregion; Magyar Telekom’s HQ comprises 58,800 sq m. Further handovers included the 36,000 sq m Mill Park, the 11,340 sq m Advance Tower I. and the 4,830 sq m EcoDome.
The total modern office stock currently adds up to 3,587,290 sq m, consisting of 2,943,580 sq m category ‘A’ and ‘B’ speculative office space as well as 643,710 sq m owner occupied space.
Industrial Property Market:
In the third quarter of 2018, one new building was handed over: a 5,000 sq m warehouse in the next phase of Budapest Dock Szabadkikötő.
The total modern industrial stock in Budapest and its surroundings stood at 2,086,120 sq m at the end of Q3 2018.
Total demand amounted to 109,350 sq m in Q3 2018, marking a 10% decrease from the figure noted in the same period last year but 83% increase compared to the previous quarter. Lease renewals accounted for 52.1% of the quarterly volume, while the share of new leases was 31.4%. Expansions stood for 10.1% of the quarterly volume. One pre-lease agreement was signed in the third quarter, representing 6.4% of total demand.
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ESTON International started its operation 25 years ago, and has become one of the most significant players in the Hungarian commercial property market, and has been remarkably successful ever since. The company, which provides a full scale of services in the commercial property market, has Sykes, Epson, MOL, Erste Fund Management, Concorde, Fusion, ACG and Nokia Networks among its main clients. ESTON operates an office area of more than 300 thousand square metres, has supervised the building of more than 40 thousand square metres office space as project manager, furthermore ESTON has one of the biggest teams of tenant representative consultants. In the past two years ESTON sold more than 200 thousand square metres of development land, and the full development potential of the properties is around 700 thousand square metres.
ESTON started its operation on the property market in 1993 and set off to expand its scale of services very early on. In addition to its professional approach the company has been focusing only on commercial properties since 2004. ESTON’s team has obtained a very strong market position in this sector, where the competitors are the local offices of the biggest global property service providers. Since 2010 ESTON has offered tailor made solutions in the property management sector as well, this branch has become one of the most dynamically growing divisions at the company. In September 2017 ESTON and Savills entered into a partnership with the aim to expand their services on institutions and property companies who would like to invest in Hungary, in addition, Hungarian clients also have wider access to the European market through Savills’ extended network of offices.
Mr. Adorján Salamon, ESTON’s Managing Director said: “I’m very proud that in the company’s history we have reached the highest number of staff, the biggest market share and annual income. I’m positive that under the current market conditions we are able to continue the growth. I would like to say thank you to our Partners and Colleagues because without them we couldn’t have realised this success story.”