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We adopt a future-oriented approach to finding, developing and managing properties in the interests of our clients.

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We develop bespoke investment solutions. We offer institutional investors the full range of knowledge in relation to structuring, product development, real estate management and market development.

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We are passionate real estate managers and fund administrators. We know the requirements of clients, properties, legislators and the market.
We take on the challenges of the future. Early identification of changes in the market, implementation of regulatory requirements and future-oriented digital management arepart of our corporate philosophy.

In the HIH Group, 994 real estate experts at eleven locations manage properties and investments throughout their lifecycle with dedication, reliability and motivation. Our clients benefit from the comprehensive service range, quick decision-making and close cooperation between departments.
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The HIH Group



Interview with Prof. Dr. Sven Bienert, IREBS University of Regensburg: Time over for greenwashing


Time over for greenwashing

Interview with Prof. Dr. Sven Bienert, IREBS University of Regensburg – Climate Protection is a task for society as a whole, which is also increasingly reflected in the legal framework for the economy in Germany. The real estate industry has a special responsibility in this regard: the building sector contributes around 35 per cent to final energy consumption and around 28 per cent to CO2 emissions. In order to achieve the specified climate protection targets at portfolio level, HIH Invest's asset management is developing strategic measures with the aim of reducing CO2 consumption on a portfolio-wide basis, increasing energy efficiency and conserving resources.

HIH Invest is in close exchange with industry associations and scientific initiatives. The question that concerns us: How can real estate companies make their contribution to climate protection across sectors and beyond national borders? In this interview we speak to Professor Dr Sven Bienert, Head of the Competence Centre for Sustainability in the Real Estate Industry at the IREBS Institute of the University of Regensburg, who examines the role of the real estate industry in the context of the climate and social changes taking place from a scientific and practice-oriented perspective.

Professor Bienert, is the real estate industry aware of its responsibility for climate protection?

The days when "greenwashing" was enough are simply over and even the last institutional market participant has set off. Climate risks, regulation and changing market demand - the pressure to act is now coming from all sides. Especially the legal requirements based on the EU Disclosure and Taxonomy Regulation, but also the CO2 pricing in Germany were massive drivers here. In addition, we now recognise another force in the real estate sector that supports decarbonisation efforts: Banks and other financial institutions providing debt capital to the market are increasingly demanding clarity on the emissions being financed - impacts on loan prices and lending can soon be expected. It is now essential for investors to have a clear sustainability strategy.

By 2045 at the latest, the entire building stock in Germany must become climate-neutral. What fields of action do you see to reduce the CO2 consumption of real estate?

There is particularly great potential in older existing buildings. 80 percent of the buildings we will be using in 2045 are in fact already built. Common measures are the relationship of green electricity, water saving devices and waste reduction. In addition, owners can invest in a new sustainable heat supply system, install photovoltaic systems and switch to sustainable refrigerants in air conditioning systems. However, the recording of consumption data is of particular importance. In the meantime, there are numerous providers who support digital data management and evaluation. In this context, it is more challenging to obtain data from the tenants, to whose consumption data the owners usually do not have access. For this reason, green leases and the installation of smart meters are becoming increasingly important.

Consumption data is the key. But how do asset managers like HIH Invest evaluate this data for their climate protection goals?

At IREBS, we have developed the Carbon Risk Real Estate Monitor (CRREM) together with an international consortium, which investors, asset managers and other stakeholders use to determine the CO2 emissions of real estate portfolios and assess the extent to which these are in line with the Paris climate protection targets. The tool converts the consumption of different energy sources and F-gases at property level into greenhouse gases and compares them with climate protection-compliant decarbonisation paths up to 2050. The tool also reveals when properties lose their marketability due to excessive CO2 emissions, i.e. when they are in danger of becoming stranded assets. The tool thus shows when investments in improving the CO2 balance are necessary at the latest.

How can climate protection be reconciled with social aspects, above all the question of creating affordable housing?

The real estate sector has to make its contribution in terms of reduced CO2 consumption; companies have recognised this and have adapted their business strategies and risk management accordingly. But it is also clear to the market participants that the social component must not be disregarded: specifically in the residential sector, it must be ensured that the already high rents are not driven up further. Ecological goals must not be achieved at the expense of the affordability of the rented housing stock. Here, politics is called upon to create incentives to mitigate the tenant-landlord dilemma, which weighs particularly heavily due to the moderate German ownership rate. The social issue also includes mobility concepts and urban development, where the real estate industry actively cooperates with municipalities, for example, to mitigate the urban-rural divide.

Thank you very much for the interview, Mr Bienert.

https://www.crrem.eu/

https://www.irebs.de/

https://www.uni-regensburg.de/wirtschaftswissenschaften/immobilien-bienert/home/index.html


Interview with Steven Pringle, GRESB: Smart metering systems ensure reliability


Smart metering systems ensure reliability

Interview with Steven Pringle, GRESB – Climate Protection is a task for society as a whole, which is also increasingly reflected in the legal framework for the economy in Germany. The real estate industry has a special responsibility in this regard: the building sector contributes around 35 per cent to final energy consumption and around 28 per cent to CO2 emissions. In order to achieve the specified climate protection targets at portfolio level, HIH Invest's asset management is developing strategic measures with the aim of reducing CO2 consumption on a portfolio-wide basis, increasing energy efficiency and conserving resources.

HIH Invest is in close contact with industry associations and scientific initiatives. The questions that concerns us: How can real estate companies contribute to climate protection across sectors and beyond national borders? In this conversation we speak to Steven Pringle, Director Member Relations GRESB, for the first part of our three-part interview series. The organisation was founded in 2009 by a number of investors who wanted to facilitate access to comparable and reliable data on the environmental, social and management performance of their investments.

Mr Pringle, is the real estate industry aware of its responsibility for climate protection?

Real estate companies have realised that general declarations of intent are no longer sufficient. Self-image development is no longer based on how companies report on themselves in ESG reports. Today, reputation is built on public commitments and how the impact of the company's climate measures can be verified.

From your point of view, what role does the commitment of initiatives such as GRESB play in promoting climate protection involvement in the real estate industry?

Many investors have different climate targets. GRESB believes that those targets related to net zero targets, regulatory reporting as well as physical and transition risks are becoming increasingly important. The GRESB valuation and the underlying data are aligned with many of these targets and will adapt to the changing needs of investors. The GRESB Benchmark Report is the first tool to identify a portfolio's ESG performance in relation to its direct peers and the real estate industry as a whole.

GRESB was founded in 2009. How have the requirements changed since then?

Investors and legislators are increasingly demanding transparency on sustainability aspects, which is also reflected in the further development of GRESB's assessment process. When we first started collecting information on sustainability, participating companies only had to prove that they had access to information on the energy consumption and CO2 emissions of their holdings. In the future, a high rating - irrespective of whether it is through GRESB or other initiatives - will not only depend on the availability and accessibility of the data. The data must reliably show the extent to which they contribute to the decarbonisation of real estate portfolio.

What role does digitalisation play in this, especially with regard to the increased requirements for data collection, documentation and reporting?

Digitisation plays a big role in enabling building owners to quantify their energy consumption and make plans to reduce it. If you don't have insight into your energy use and the resulting carbon emissions, it's difficult to determine which parts of the building's operation are the most energy and carbon intensive. This is where smart metering and advanced building management systems are critical for measuring performance.

Thank you very much for the interview, Mr Pringle.

GRESB | Global ESG Benchmark for Real Assets


HIH Invest Acquires another Asset for its Local Retail Fund


HIH Invest kauft weiteres Objekt für Nahversorgerfonds

  • Modernised market in Bavarian town of Küps
  • More than 4,200 square metres of retail area
  • Fully occupied, the long-term anchor tenant being REWE
  • Number of assets in portfolio of “Perspektive Einzelhandel: Fokus Nahversorgung” fund now up to 21

Hamburg, 13 April 2022 – HIH Invest Real Estate (“HIH Invest”) acquired a retail park in Küps in northern Bavaria via an asset deal with a private investor. It is the twenty-first property in the portfolio of the “Perspektive Einzelhandel: Fokus Nahversorgung” institutional fund for local retail real estate, and has a total lettable area of 4,224 square metres. The supermarket at Lessingstrasse 13-15 has been located in the same site for over 20 years, and acts as an important neighbourhood retail centre. Its anchor tenant is REWE, the only full-line grocer in town. The property was thoroughly modernised in 2021. In conjunction with the upgrade, REWE renewed its lease to secure the site for another 15 years. Among the other tenants are the KiK discount fashion retailer, which has also been on the premises for 20 years, and another two retailers: a kitchen studio and an interior decorating store. The units of the latter, are let on open-ended leases, and these have been here for a long time as well. The property is fully occupied.

Jens Nagelsmeier, Head of Transaction Management Retail & Healthcare, said: “The cash flow is secured by the fast-selling blue-chip anchor tenant REWE with its long-term lease of 15 years plus renewal option. Grocery retailing, being an essential business, generates 90 percent of the neighbourhood retail centre’s annual rent revenues. Both the rent analysis and sales analysis return sustainable and market-consistent values when compared to relevant benchmarks, and thus suggest a positive, profitable performance of this property. Convenience centres and supermarkets benefit from their resilience. Sales revenues in German food retailing increased by 18 percent between 2016 and 2020, according to the GfK consumer research society. Especially full-line grocers benefit from the ongoing trend toward one-stop shopping.”

The acquisition of the convenience centre in Küps brings the total amount invested in the “Perspektive Einzelhandel: Fokus Nahversorgung” fund up to more than 400 million euros. The property contributes in a strategy-compliant way to the further portfolio build-up of the fund, which is still in its investment phase. Its allocation profile specifies retail parks and convenience centres with a retail share of more than 80 percent in conveniently accessed district or suburban locations. The retail type of use currently accounts for more than 90 percent of the occupancy among the portfolio assets. Eligible locations for the “core” and “core plus” risk profiles are economically stable German cities. The target figure for each investment asset ranges from 10 to 40 million euros.

The convenience centre occupies a central location in Küps, and offers nearly 200 free parking spots along with easy-to-use entrance and exit arrangements. It is also highly visible because it straddles the main thoroughfare, the B173 federal route connecting the town to the middle-order centres of Kronach and Lichtenfels. Located in the immediate vicinity are a drinks cash & carry/liquor store, a Tedi textiles store, and gastronomic amenities. The population of the catchment area within walking distance is growing as a result of ongoing construction projects. The town of Küps lies between the neighbouring middle- and high-order centres of Kronach, Lichtenfels and Kulmbach. The socio-economic conditions here are stable, suggesting robust parameters for a retail venue, especially with respect to food retailing.

The legal and tax due diligences were undertaken by Baker Tilly Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH, a law firm based in Frankfurt am Main. Responsible for the technical due diligence and the ESG due diligence was C.P.H. Projekt- und Baumanagement GmbH based in Hamburg.

“The cash flow is secured by the fast-selling blue-chip anchor tenant REWE with its long-term lease of 15 years plus renewal option. Grocery retailing, being an essential business, generates 90 percent of the neighbourhood retail centre’s annual rent revenues. Both the rent analysis and sales analysis return sustainable and market-consistent values when compared to relevant benchmarks, and thus suggest a positive, profitable performance of this property. Convenience centres and supermarkets benefit from their resilience. Sales revenues in German food retailing increased by 18 percent between 2016 and 2020, according to the GfK consumer research society. Especially full-line grocers benefit from the ongoing trend toward one-stop shopping.” Jens Nagelsmeier, Head of Transaction Management Retail & Healthcare HIH Invest Real Estate