News in brief: Bavaria, EU, automotive industry, real estate

News in brief
News in brief

PM visits BMW in Bavaria as part of EU discussions in Germany

Prime Minister David Cameron has visited the BMW production plant as part of a short visit to Bavaria to discuss EU reform with German colleagues.

The British automotive industry has undergone an extraordinary revival in the last decade and part of that has come from German investment – principally in Oxford – where the combination of German investment and British craftsmanship has helped rebuild Mini and its reputation. BMW is one of the largest German investors in the UK, with 7,000 direct jobs, contributing over £1bn to the UK’s automotive supply chain and £1.2bn each year to UK GDP.

Speaking after the visit, the Prime Minister said: “BMW is a great example of how working together creates jobs and opportunities that benefit both our countries. I am incredibly proud that so many BMWs roll off production lines with engines made in the UK.

“I firmly believe the EU is stronger with Britain, and that Britain will be at its strongest in a reformed EU.”

Global real estate will feel the effects of disruption in 2016

The five leading cities for investment prospects in 2016 are Berlin at the top spot, followed by Hamburg, Dublin, Madrid and Copenhagen, according to a forecast published jointly by the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). The property developers, investors and operators leading the pack are paying more attention to the role the physical office plays in talent management and workplace productivity.

Rapidly changing demands of occupiers and the disruptive forces of technology, demographics, social change, and rapid urbanisation are permeating the European real estate value chain, says the report. These ground-level disruptions have led to investors focusing on cities and assets rather than countries. This is also visible in investors demonstrating more interest in alternative, operational sectors that have benefited from rapid urbanisation and demographic shifts, such as healthcare, hotels, student accommodation and data centres. Some 41% of survey respondents would consider investing in alternative sectors, compared to just 28% in last year’s survey. The high street retail and logistics sectors, which have benefited from technological advances and improving economic conditions, are also predicted to fare well in 2016.

In addition, development is expected to create value in 2016, with 78% of respondents citing it as an attractive way to acquire prime assets. More progressive developers and investors are innovating in an attempt to meet the needs of increasingly informed and demanding occupiers.