The Real Estate Investment World Global Opportunities Conference, held from October 31st to November 2nd in New York, brought together a multinational group of investors, developers, and analysts representing all land uses, including hospitality, office, industrial, retail, and residential. Richard Katzman, Managing Director of HVS Mexico City, attended the conference and participated on a panel discussing real estate investment trends in Latin America. What follows is a summary of his observations.
Conference panels described trends and opportunities in the United States and Europe, as well as emerging markets in China, India, Mexico, and other Asian and Latin American countries. Despite differences in the scale of their respective markets, certain principal similarities apply to all. In general terms, real estate markets in these countries remain relatively small compared to those of mature economies in the U.S. and Europe. Global investors tend to manifest interest in the acquisition of existing income-producing property, although asset pools are limited. More robust real estate inventories are expected over the next five to ten years as capital sources concentrate their investments in local development platforms. Investors in these markets are keen to identify development partners with strong capabilities, compatible ethics, a proven track record, and the means to align interests by co-investing.
Lodging investment in most of these emerging economies is growing aggressively, embracing both business and leisure travel. The majority of hotels in these markets are not branded, providing a considerable opportunity for developers and international chains to accompany growth in the local economies. In leisure destinations, notably those in Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean, there is a clear trend toward the development of projects that combine a branded hotel with a residential product.
Additional information about the conference can be found at http://www.terrapinn.com/2007/reiwgo.