Location3 magazine - August 28, 2019
“He who dares not, must hope not.” These words come not from me but from the greater German poet Friedrich Schiller. In my opinion, they perfectly express how we at VGP think long term, deal with challenges and seize attractive opportunities for our customers. For me, the current issue of VGP Location³ is a very special one because, among other things, we present two exciting projects in Germany upon which VGP has worked intensively over the past few years, and where we took a chance along the way: Munich and Laatzen.
On 12 December 2013, we acquired our first property in Bavaria. On 18 July 2019 – almost six years later – we were able to announce the actual start of the project at a press conference in Vaterstetten. Over the next few years, we will be developing the new Munich business park on an area of around 40 hectares for such traditional industrial icons as the BMW Group and the KraussMaffei Group. The start of construction marks the start of the largest relocation project in the greater Munich area since the airport was relocated from Riem to Erding in 1992. For more than five years now, we have been making repeated efforts to acquire an attractive land site in Laatzen near the Hanover Fair. In 2019 we finally succeeded. The go-ahead for the construction of the 28 hectare industrial park was given in June 2019 at a joint press conference with the city of Laatzen and anchor tenant KraussMaffei Berstorff, another KraussMaffei Group company. After more than 130 years, this traditional company will move from its current location to our new industrial park in Laatzen.
I am so proud of these two projects because they are not just milestones for VGP in Germany, they also show what VGP stands for: Persistence, vision and customer orientation. Over the years, we have invested a lot of time and energy in these properties because we were convinced of the locations and were able to win the right customers for these projects. Both parks together are already 88% pre-let. At the same time, with these projects we are taking a new path towards sustainable construction and resource-conserving operation. The VGP Group will install one of the largest photovoltaic systems ever to be installed on a building in Europe on the hall roofs of Munich Park. We will gradually incorporate the experience gained from these two projects into future new construction projects. At the same time, from 1 January 2020, the VGP Group will have all new buildings to be constructed certified with the industry-leading and renowned BREEAM certificate for compliance with sustainability standards along the entire value chain. But sustainability will not be the only focus for our company. In order to master the exciting and interesting challenges of the coming years, we have further strengthened our Board with extensive external expertise. In this issue, I am particularly pleased to present our three new VGP Board members elected in May 2019: Katherina Reiche, Vera Gäde-Butzlaff and Ann Gaeremynck. To these three strong women, each an outstanding personality in her own right, I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you once again. Last but not least, we announced the second 50/50 joint venture with Allianz Real Estate on 1 July, 2019. This proven partnership will help us to grow further in already developed markets such as Spain and Italy, but also in a fast growing market such as Romania.
As you can see, a lot has happened in recent weeks and months. And we have set the right course to ensure that things do not get boring in the future and that we continue to successfully develop VGP together with our customers and employees.
I hope you enjoy reading VGP Location3
Jan Van Geet