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Update from Dominique Moerenhout

The theme of this year’s EPRA Conference was ‘RE-Think’ to adapt to rapidly changing market conditions, particularly in the traditional retail and office sectors, as the growth of e-commerce and co-working puts pressure on traditional real estate business models. There were plenty of opportunities to take a new look at the industry in the refreshed conference programme, notably in the afternoon ‘start-up’ sessions, which profiled some of the most innovative companies in the market and subjected them to a grilling from an expert jury.

The ‘Investors’ Day’ also goes from strength-to-strength with very well attended sessions and some 27 companies presenting their business cases in a format that efficiently maximises exposure to investors in a short amount of time. Feedback indicated that people liked the way the presentations were grouped into property sectors to allow cross comparisons of companies and discussions with their market peers. EPRA will carefully review members views on this year’s conference as we structure the programme for the 2019 event in Madrid, which coincides with the Association’s 20th anniversary.

During the last weeks of 2018, we have an active events schedule:

  • On November 23,there is EPRA’s third Sustainability Workshop in London. Because ESG factors in the built environment are climbing up the agenda for investors, we have extended the workshop to a full-day from a half-day with an improved format and extended focus, and external speakers addressing sustainability and diversity themes.
  • December 2 to 7 is EPRA’s Asia Week, where senior executives from five European companies will be visiting five cities in five days to highlight the European listed real estate sector to Asian investors.

For the first time, EPRA will also be organising a large-scale corporate access event in London, which has become a key issue for companies and investors alike following the EU’s MiFID II legislation. Some 20 companies will have the opportunity to participate in up to seven one-on-one and group meetings with investors on December 12.

I would like to conclude this final EPRA Newsletter of 2018 by welcoming new members: Brickmark, Fabege, GRIT, Real Estate Income Group, Hembla, ICAMAP, Instone Real Estate Income Group, Paris Reality Fund, Supermarket REIT and Town Centre Securities.

Then it just leaves me to warmly thank Jean-Michel Gault and Olivier Elamine for their strong contributions to the work of the Reporting and Accounting and Sustainability Committees as they step down after respectively three and four years as Chairs. In this issue, you can read interviews with both of them on the highlights of their terms.