Issue #22

Location3 magazine - October 2, 2023

Dear readers,

As we wrap up this latest issue of Location3 magazine, we also are finalising our preparations for EXPO REAL 2023, the grandest trade fair in Europe for real estate and related investment. More so than ever, EXPO REAL will this year dedicate time and resources to such themes as “decarbonisation of the property portfolio”, “climate-neutral urban development”, and “properties as ecosystems”.

At VGP, we could not be more pleased that our industry is devoting well justified attention to such crucial matters as mitigating climate change, protecting biodiversity, and
minimising urban sprawl. As you may ascertain from the content of this Location3, we at VGP care very deeply about such issues. That is why increasing numbers of our growing staff are experts in designing and implementing sustainability solutions, we seek to build on brown fields where we can, VGP is installing thousands of solar panels on its buildings, our target is to have 100% of new buildings certified as BREEAM Excellent or DGNB Gold, and VGP Foundation supports environmental protection projects (among others).

Our clients care, too

It is no small challenge, but we want VGP to be part of the solution rather than just part of the problem. There is only so much we can do, of course,
but we should do what we can. We are seeing that many of our tenants agree wholeheartedly with that view. In fact, they demand that we act responsibly and assist them also to reduce their carbon footprints and improve their sustainability profiles.

You can read here about some of the things VGP and its clients are doing in support of greater sustainability. Apollo Tyres, for example, is a member of the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber, and it is working to use recycled rubber and bio-materials in its tyres (see interview page 4). To take another example, BMW is committed to growing shipments of electric cars to greater than 50% of its global sales by 2030 and to making its automobiles easily recyclable in support of a circular economy (article page 21).

Featuring efforts to reduce suffering

We humbly admire those organisations and individuals across our planet who are selflessly devoted to improving the welfare of other human beings and the protection of nature and even other species. We hope you will be moved, as we were, by learning about the extreme – but highly effective – efforts to protect dwindling rhinoceros populations from poachers by sensitively dehorning these magnificent giants of the African Savanah (article page 16). Unfortunately, human tragedy is all too common in our world. For more than 70 years, the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has been protecting and assisting refugees from war and all manner of humanitarian crises. We spoke with Astrid van Genderen Stort, UNHCR’s Chief of Service Emergency Coordination and Communication, who told us, for example, that 17.6 million Ukrainians remain in urgent need of support. She also explained how the private sector can and does help UNHCR in its work (interview page 25).

Welcome to new colleagues, and to Denmark

As always, we have been pleased to welcome many new employees to VGP in recent months. Although space limitations no longer enable us to introduce every new employee in these pages, some of them are featured here and we want to note that every new and longtime member of the VGP team is important to the organisation and to the work we do for our clients. This issue of Location3 gives particular attention to Denmark, one of our newest markets where VGP is preparing to grow together with its clients (articles pages 8, 9, and 14). With every new market that VGP enters we become more international and, we hope, more perceptive and open to humanity and the world we all share. From our new Danish friends, we are learning about a phenomenon they call hygge (pronounced HOO-gah), described as an idyllic feeling of contentment, calm, and conviviality.

We wish to you, our readers, more hygge as summer slips away and the year-end season of time with family and friends is already not so far off. If you will be at EXPO REAL in Munich, we hope you will drop by to meet us at stand A2.123 for a chat accompanied by some typical Spanish delicacies.

Your editorial team