US real estate investment fund Heitman sold the Aupark Tower office building in Bratislava to the real estate fund of the investment bank Wood & Company in early June. The consultancy company CBRE, which mediated the deal, describes the transaction as the biggest on the Slovak office real-estate market for seven years. The price, however, was not disclosed.
“Via the acquisition of the office assets Aupark Tower and Lakeside Park in Bratislava and the Hadovka Office Park in Prague, we are strengthening our position in the administration of real estate funds for qualified investors, by which we are trying to satisfy the growing appetite of investors for such assets,” said Martin Šmigura of Wood & Company, as cited in a press release from CBRE.
Developer HB Reavis completed Aupark Tower, next to the Aupark shopping centre on the Petržalka side of the Danube River, in 2008. It has 22 upper-ground floors, one underground floor and 750 parking places. The total rentable area amounts to 35,000 square metres. It holds the BREEAM EXCELLENT certificate. Now it houses such prominent concerns as the IT companies Eset and AT&T and the mobile operator O2.
“This excellent transaction confirms the position of Bratislava as a prominent investment market in central and eastern Europe,” said Anthony Selman, head of investment properties for central & eastern Europe at CBRE, as cited in the press release. “This investment is part of a wave of foreign capital, whose aim is to utilise the difference in investment revenues the Slovak quality office real-estate market offers compared with abroad.”
Heitman European Property Partners IV bought Aupark Tower in 2012 when the price might have been as high as €85.6 million, the Trend weekly reported at that time.
Photo: Courtesy of CBRE
While the share of the market held by rental apartments in the countries of the European Union is between 19 and 62 percent, in Slovakia it is only about 6 percent. This negatively affects labour force mobility and housing for young families and handicapped citizens, the Benchmarking Information Exchange Project has discovered. The Supreme Audit Office (NKÚ) in Slovakia participated in the project and focused on the comparison of support for rental housing between Slovakia and the Czech Republic and Austria where the share of rental apartments on the market is 21 percent and 42 percent, respectively.
Slovaks are increasingly interested in recreational real estate. The demand has increased by 20 percent over the last year. The most wanted properties are cottages near Michalovce in eastern Slovakia.
Healthy offices providing a sustainable environment in terms of energy, as well as their surroundings, are a world trend that has not skipped Slovakia. There are a number of buildings that have already received or are applying for the world-renowned LEED, BREEAM, WELL or Fitwell certifications. One of them is the Einpark office building in Petržalka, which – as the first in Slovakia – has successfully completed LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) pre-certification to the highest degree, Platinum.
The abandoned building of the former Lamač department store in Bratislava’s borough of the same name will return to life. The new owner, the investment group Dynastion, will revitalise it into the Karpatia centre. Apart from shops, it will house co-working offices and provide space for a youth community centre. The complex revitalisation of the building should start this autumn.
While Bratislava already accommodates almost 30 shopping centres, another one is on the horizon. Macho Consulting, a company that has been devoted especially to residential projects in the past, will build Matrix Mall in the more or less industrial zone of Bratislava in the borough of Nové Mesto. The shopping centre on the corner of Magnetova and Vajnorská streets, close to the Vozovňa Nové Mesto depot, will offer retail and office space.
Trnava-based tycoon Vladimír Poór has sold the recently opened City Arena shopping centre in Trnava to Peter Korbačka, the head of the board of directors of the developer J&T Real Estate. The latter already owns the Eurovea shopping centre in Bratislava. Neither the price nor other details of the transaction have been disclosed.
The emptied defective Apollo Business Centre 1 in Bratislava will be replaced by a brand-new construction. The developer HB Reavis estimates the launch of demolition work for the end of 2018. Construction work on the new business centre, the Nové (new) Apollo should start in late 2019 and be complete in 2021. Exact dates will depend on permission processes.