Michal Cwiklinski. Credit: Avison Young

Real estate investment market in Poland in 2021

The Polish investment market has quickly adjusted to the changes caused by the pandemic. The retail market is still spearheaded by retail parks, which have been increasingly popular among investors for the past three years.

By Michal Cwiklinski: Principal, Managing Director – Poland at Avison Young

However, 2021 also saw eight large shopping centers being transacted – a strong rebound compared to the previous year, when only two such schemes were traded. A smaller volume is partially caused by the lack of large retail portfolios or office skyscrapers being the subject of transaction. In exchange, more and more industrial portfolios are being traded, which are however characterized by smaller lot sizes. We expect that next year will see a great comeback of the office sector, mainly core and core+ assets, in both Warsaw and regional cities.

  • EUR 5.9 billion = total investment volume in 2021
  • 166 transactions (record high)
  • 80 active investors on the market
Result of a EUR 140 million JV between Patron Capital and Trei to develop retail parks in Poland – Retail park in Chorzow. Credit. Avison Young

Retail market: Shopping centers are back in the game

2021 saw the continuation of lower investment volumes on the retail market, however, the structure of transactions changed visibly. After shopping center deals almost disappeared in 2020, last year, there were 12 large‑scale shopping centers sold in highly lucrative locations. They were all sold at attractive pricing with opportunities to create value or redevelopments.

“On the other hand, the amount of retail parks acquired confirms the high demand for such assets, even in smaller towns,” comments Cwiklinski. “Due to lack of larger retail parks in main cities, investors are turning to smaller projects in secondary locations which resulted in lower volume and high liquidity.”

  • 41% = share in number of convenience transactions in 2021
Bemowo Shopping Center, sold by Aerium to Futureal Investment Partners, Avison Young advised the seller. Credit: Avison Young

Industrial market is growing

The industrial sector’s growth continued in 2021, resulting in almost EUR 3 billion of transaction volume – the highest result in history. Also, this year, compared to 2020, was characterized by increased liquidity – while transaction volume grew by 13%, the total number of transactions was raised by 42%. 

“Another visible trend, which is not reflected in the volume, is the significantly growing number of investors looking for JV opportunities, as investors find it difficult to acquire standing assets, and look for higher returns.” – comments Michal Cwiklinski, Managing Director – Poland. 

Office market: Expected great comeback

For the past few years, the share of the office investment volume has been shrinking. However, in the following quarters, we expect this to change. While in 2021, the number of value-add transactions exceeded core assets deals, in 2022, multiple office building transactions are scheduled to be closed and appear on the market. In Warsaw, 30% of office transactions took place in Mokotów – amounting to EUR 343 million. 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Record-high liquidity – Polish market attracting more investors than ever.
  • Core office deals will have a strong comeback next year.
  • Shopping galleries are becoming interesting, but only under certain conditions.
  • Retail parks are still hot – increase in number of deals third year in a row.
  • Rocketing share of industrial volume.
  • Still low volume of closed residential transactions despite growing demand.

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