Andrew Phipps from Cushman & Wakefield: Property Enables and Empowers People to Be All They Can

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Today we sat with Andrew Phipps, Head of Business Development EMEA & Global Futurist at Cushman & Wakefield, to discuss how commercial real estate evolves in 2021 and beyond.

Could you please start by telling us a little bit about your background and why you chose a career in commercial real estate?

I'm atypical of the commercial real estate industry. My background is in consulting, spending a decade travelling the world working with major global companies to address their challenges. An amazing time and one that feels a lifetime ago under the current travel restrictions. 

Following this I moved into lead insight and digital roles, only coming to commercial real estate in the past 7 years. What was I waiting for? What an amazing industry it is, and I can honestly say the role I have now is the favourite of my career. 

Considering the COVID-19 pandemic, what are your thoughts on the CRE market in Europe today in terms of trends and challenges?

The trends are focused on a couple of areas right now - logistics and industrial (supporting eCommerce in particular), the challenge being the volume of a stock in the market. Opportunities in all of the specialist markets - living, including residential and retirement living, healthcare and life-sciences of course. 

Challenges are naturally around uncertainty - people hate not knowing. As certainty returns to the market investment volumes will swiftly increase. There is so much money waiting to be allocated that's just a case of 'when.'

What differentiates the commercial real estate market in Europe from other major markets such as the United States?

The major difference is in the detail. Each country in Europe has a different set of guidelines, regulations and culture. In the US you have East Coast, West Coast and the rest, yes there are differences of course in pricing and demand but in Europe, every country, every city is very different. Online penetration, propensity to work from home, purpose all varies dramatically.

How have you seen the industry evolve in the past years you’ve been involved in it? Where do you see it going in the future?

My passion is to understand what is going to happen in the future and how people will respond. It's gratifying to see that data points beyond …

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