JLL: Inv’t In Retail Sector Falls By 27% In H1 To €1,278M

20 September 2016 – La Vanguardia

Real estate investment in the retail sector – which includes shopping centres, retail parks and other premises – decreased by 27% during the first half of the year to €1,279 million, as a result of the shortage of products in the market, according to data published yesterday by the real estate consultancy JLL.

Despite the decrease in investment during the first half of the year, the firm expects the full year to close roughly in line with 2015, when investment exceeded €3,000 million. Moreover, it does not detect any negative impact as a result of the political instability in Spain at the moment.

Spain accounted for 7% of all retail investment in Europe during the first half of 2016, to stand in fourth place in the overall ranking.

High street stores and shopping centres accounted for 25% and 23% of total investment in H1 2016, respectively, well below the 48% that each one of those segments represented a year ago.

Despite the decrease in investment, JLL is convinced that the fall is not indicative of a deceleration in the market. The number of operations completed during the first half of the year amounted to 38, exceeding the 23 signed a year earlier.

Nevertheless, the average size of those transactions decreased by half to €40 million. Most, 18, corresponded to high street stores, amounting to €310 million in total, compared with 14 operations amounting to €860 million in 2015.

Socimis accounted for 16% of the total investment with €106 million.

In terms of rents, Paseo de Gracia recorded an increase of 11.6% to €240/sqm/month, although Portal del Ángel in Barcelona was crowned the most expensive street in Spain after rents there increased by 8.3% to €260/sqm/month.

In Madrid, Preciados is the most expensive street, with rents of €255/sqm/month, following an increase of 6.25%. It is followed by Serrano (€240/sqm/month and an increase of 6.7%) and Gran Vía (€230/sqm/month, up by 4.5%).

The forecasts indicate that rents in Madrid will increase by 2.4% p.a. during the period 2016-2018 and by 1.7% p.a. in Barcelona.

In the case of shopping centres, rental prices reached €88/sqm/month and forecasts show that they will increase at an average annual rate of 2.2% between 2016 and 2018.

During this period, new shopping centre openings are expected to double after hitting a minimum of 343,000 sqm between 2013 and 2015.

Project highlights this year include: Parque Nevada (Granada), Sambil Outlet Madrid and Fan Mallorca Shopping. Between now and 2018, the following centres are also expected to open: Plaza Río; Open Sky Center; Viladecans The Style Outlets; Torre Village; Palmas Altas and Torrecárdenas.

According to the Director of the Retail Department at JLL, Sergio Fernandes, there are increasingly more players interested in developing new centres from scratch, as well as significant interest in both the sale and purchase of new centres.

JLL also highlighted the growing trend in terms of the opening of flagship stores, as well as the shortage of quality space, which is forcing retailers to convert other spaces from residential, office and leisure use into commercial properties.

One of the most noteworthy operations of this kind is the opening of a 5,000 sqm Zara store on Castellana 79 (in the building that previously housed Fnac), which is due to open at the end of 2016 or the beginning of 2017.

JLL expects returns to continue to be compressed over the next few months and that the average value of the shopping centre market will grow by 5.6% p.a.

Original story: La Vanguardia

Translation: Carmel Drake

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