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Explorer Investments should seek new market opportunities
30 April 2020 |

Despite the instability real estate is going through in times of pandemic, Explorer Investments assumed it should be one of the players to take its stand within the investment opportunities market.

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Despite not disclosing the segments on which it will focus its demand, Pedro Seabra, Partner Real Estate at Explorer Investments, assured to Iberian Property Investment Talks that Explorer will be «on the buyer’s side since some market problems will be fixed with opportunistic investments. This is a reality we must face», he highlighted.

But this will not be its only strategy since Explorer Investments should also act as a seller. «The assets we had planned to sell two months ago and which are stagnant now, should be placed on the market again within a few months», he explained.

In terms of investment, Pedro Seabra considers that currently players «will not feel comfortable in acquiring office buildings and, will, probably, feel uncomfortable about acquiring shopping centres as had already been the case recently». The reason for this, he explained, is that there will be a «slight change» in the office segment, with some spaces «becoming redundant», and also a clear change in retail, since the «competition between e-commerce and retail spaces will be stronger».

Tourism will come back «very strong» to Portugal

Under this scenario, the hotel segment should face «extremely hard» months. Despite this situation, Pedro Seabra believes that «the future might be very good and attractive for this business. It will take some time until people feel confident to travel, but when they do, tourism will come back very strong».

«Portugal’s good image as a tourism destination» created not only by the way we managed the last crisis but also by the way we are managing this one, should generate some comfort for tourists to come back, because they feel that «Portugal is a safe and organised country, with a good healthcare system», he explained.

In this context, «the domestic market and Spanish tourists [who have easy access to the country] can help Portuguese hotels tremendously during the Summer months», believes Pedro Seabra who recognised, however, that «this is still an unknown situation», and, so, «we will need to see whether the borders will be opened and how passenger air transportation will be managed». In any event, «if we do not have an international market, we will at least have an internal market and should also have the Spanish market».

Accelerating planning might be an incentive to the construction industry

Despite the recent past planning having been «very hard and slow», there seem to be improvements now. The Partner Real Estate at Explorer Investments revealed that «we now see digitisation on the whole economy and, in particular, in municipalities, we hope that this might in some way improve the processes and accelerate them». This is a reality that «has been clear in the Lisbon municipality», for example.

Acceleration and efficiency in planning together with an improvement in taxes might be two ingredients to «incentivise construction in the future». Pedro Seabra considers that «it is very important» to do it, «because it is very important for the recovery of the economy», and he further remarked that «real estate and construction are the engines of the economy. They were so in the past and will be in the future».