We are proud of the fact that investors beyond the borders of Serbia recognise the uniqueness, specificity and quality of the wide range of services that our platform provides, which opens up opportunities for us to make a significant contribution to the development of these markets, notes Mia Zečević.
The end of another calendar year is approaching, the sixth since the founding of Novaston. Are you satisfied with your position on the real estate market?
– Our platform has this year continued to realise its goal of consolidating its position as a leader on the Serbian market. Novaston has contributed significantly to the development of the retail segment by participating in the opening of the major shopping centres – Promenade in Novi Sad and Ada Mall in Belgrade – providing project management and leasing agent services.
We also positioned ourselves on the Croatian market at the beginning of this year, where we are a strategic partner in the expansion of Immofinaz, one of our most important clients. This is the first step in realising our aspirations of regional coverage, as we plan to take over and develop more projects in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro and on the territory of Kosovo.
The retail market has been growing steadily for five years in Serbia. What led to that?
– This came as a result of the influx of FDI and large fund investments. Two large shopping centres have opened in the past two years: the Promenade in Novi Sad, covering 50,000 square metres, and GTC Ada Mall, 34,000 square meters; in 2020 we expect the opening of the Eagle Hills – Belgrade Waterfront project, covering an area of 93,000 square metres, and the MPC IPM Beo Shopping Centre covering 46,000 square metres. An IKEA retail park on 36,000 square metres is planned to be opened in 2021, which will include a strip mall concept (mostly outlets) with one larger, separate DIY facility and several smaller, separate outlets.
What is the current situation on the business buildings market, primarily when it comes to office space?
– The initiators of the wave of foreign direct investment in business premises in Serbia were the Israeli investors who built Airport City, the first centre with a modern business concept in Belgrade. This wave has not ended, so the office space market is expected to expand in the coming period, with the current supply not meeting demand.
The most recent addition to the current offer is the 16,000m2 Business Garden project by Afi Europe investors and the Shikun & Binui Group in the city centre. Additionally, GTC has built the third of five buildings within the scope of its 46,000m2 Green Heart project, and ‘Napred’ has completed the expansion of the 10,700m2 N House project.
We can’t fail to mention the industrial real estate market. It seems to us that it is also very lively. Are we mistaken?
– Following stagnation in 2018, the industrial real estate market has picked up significantly this year, thanks to the completion of several distribution and logistics centres. The demands are ever increasing and strengthening, because production companies are the most active on the market, especially those in the automotive sector.
Of the newly constructed facilities, the most significant are the Belgrade Industrial Park in Šimanovci and Nelt’s fifth Logistics Centre, a smaller facility at the Port of Belgrade and CTPark Belgrade West in Šimanovci, as well as several production facilities throughout Serbia.