Consolidation of the residential business, maintaining a high rental level in all completed Resi4Rent projects, starting new "destination" projects – this is a summary of the operational activities of Echo Investment Group in the first half of 2023. The Group's development plans are supported by a high cash balance of over PLN 662 million.
In the last half-year, the Group’s net profit attributable to the shareholders of the parent company amounted to PLN 9.1 million and was mostly the result of handover of 612 apartments to clients and great attention to margins.
– We have started new projects in key market sectors and are preparing new ones. Our freedom of action in the development area is provided by high level of cash amounting to over PLN 662 million and the valuation of our assets, which, despite exchange rate fluctuations, exceeds PLN 5.7 billion – says Maciej Drozd, CFO of Echo Investment.
In the first half of 2023, the Group sold 822 apartments (568 found in Archicom projects), of which 448 were sold in Q2 2023. From January to June this year, 612 apartments were handed over to clients, of which 319 in Q2 2023, and over 2.7 thousand residential units were under construction.
In August 2023, the transfer of Echo Investment's competences and residential projects to Archicom was completed. It marks a clear division between the Group's residential business addressed to individual clients and the commercial offer in the office, retail and PRS sectors.
– We have clearly divided competences between the Group’s core business lines so that they can continue to grow in demanding market conditions and effectively respond to customer needs. We have created strong foundations for the development of the Archicom brand in the largest agglomerations with significant purchasing power. Soon we will start the construction of 2.4 thousand apartments, and our land bank enables the development of another 8,000. We are also strengthening the strategic position of Echo Investment as a developer of large-scale destination projects that are changing Polish cities, providing sustainable places to live, work and spend free time - comments Nicklas Lindberg, CEO of Echo Investment.
In Warsaw, Echo Investment in cooperation with AFI Europe has started the development of Towarowa, a new urban quarter with a 2-hectare park, workspaces, a commercial and service offer on the ground floors, and apartments for sale and rent.
In the six largest cities in the country, the Group already has over 4,000 fully rented apartments on subscription under the Resi4Rent brand. Good prospects for the PRS segment result from the structure of the Polish residential market, as well as social and economic trends, including greater professional mobility. Until the end of this year the number of apartments of this type completed and implemented by the Group will be close to 9,000.
In Q2 2023, Echo Investment also noted significant achievements in leasing office space. Both MidPoint71 in Wrocław and React in the centre of Łódź were successfully filled with tenants. Currently, the company is preparing to build office buildings in Kraków and Wrocław, which will offer a total of over 42,000 sq m space, responding to the supply gap that may occur in the most absorbent office locations in the regions.
In the retail real estate sector, Echo Investment continues to adapt its offer to latest trends and post-pandemic customer expectations. On a half-year basis, these activities translate into an increase in turnover and footfall in Katowice's Libero (+19% and +8% y/y, respectively) and Galeria Młociny in Warsaw (+14% and +9% y/y).
In March 2023, the Echo-Archicom 2030 ESG strategy was announced. It is a step-by-step roadmap leading the Group to decarbonization, zero-emission investments, as well as further increasing the role of greenery in projects and supporting proper urban development.