METRO PROPERTIES is the real estate company of METRO GROUP. At the end of September 2013, it owned 565 retail properties worldwide. Its primary job is to increase the value of the group’s real estate assets over the long term through active, strategic portfolio and asset management – while reconciling the interests of tenants and owners. The company acts as a service provider for our sales lines that assists with the search for business locations as well as the development and management of wholesale and retail properties. Other services include energy management, facility management for retail, administrative and warehouse locations and the management of shopping centres. METRO GROUP reported real estate as an independent segment in the past. On 1 October 2013, the operating activities of the company were integrated into the sales lines and will no longer be reported separately.
METRO PROPERTIES offers all services related to the entire life cycle of properties. The company focuses on creating attractive locations for the sales lines and external tenants as well as raising their appeal to customers through development projects. In addition, METRO PROPERTIES supports the group’s international expansion by making of selective divestments. In the process, the company ensures that the requirements of portfolio management are taken into account. As a result, the capital tied up in properties can be optimally put to use to support METRO GROUP’s growth plans.
Value-oriented asset and portfolio strategy
The experts at METRO PROPERTIES continuously analyse the composition and performance of METRO GROUP’s real estate portfolio. In addition, they conduct potential, market and competition analyses of national and international locations and real estate markets and derive specific action plans from this information. This forms the foundation for strategic real estate management. The company’s employees define targets for portfolios as well as for individual locations and properties in order to achieve systematic and long-term gains in revenue and value. METRO PROPERTIES does this by optimally leveraging investment cycles. Profitable acquisitions are made in those markets where real estate prices show long-term growth potential. The company aims to sell properties at the height of their value appreciation.
One example of these strategic divestments is the placement of 43 French stores of the METRO Cash & Carry sales line on the market in the form of a closed-end real estate fund. Transactions such as this demonstrate solid investor demand in METRO GROUP’s core markets. Against this backdrop, the planned expansion of the company’s project development activities is of particular importance. The company has, for instance, identified various locations whose value could be improved through selective renovation work. In future, the focus of this work will shift more towards supporting the sales lines in all areas, from new openings, reconstructions and expansions to enhanced repositioning of the business model with a view to customer needs.
Experts for planning, project development and construction
METRO PROPERTIES offers the sales lines turnkey solutions for all retail property needs in the areas of new construction, reconstruction, modernisation and expansion. A team of project managers, architects, planners and engineers works closely with the sales lines of METRO GROUP as well as with external customers. The aim is to improve properties’ attractiveness for the sales lines and external tenants as well as to generate capital appreciation of the objects through additional rentals.
Energy efficiency as a task for the future
For METRO GROUP, the energy-related optimisation of its locations is a long-range, strategic undertaking. By applying this approach, the group can reduce climate-relevant emissions related to business activities and respond to rising energy prices. In addition to higher grid utilisation fees, a number of levies for high-energy companies, particularly in Germany, have contributed to rising costs. These include the Renewable Energy Act levy and the offshore levy that was introduced in 2013. In Germany, though, total energy costs will remain stable for 2014 thanks to the company’s forward-looking and centralised energy strategy.
METRO PROPERTIES develops concepts that enable METRO GROUP to lower its energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions – such as using alternative energies and renewable electricity production. In July 2013, the METRO Cash & Carry stores in Düsseldorf and Berlin-Marienfelde put their own combined heat and power units into operation. As a result, the two stores can produce electricity and heat from natural gas. Additional combined heat and power units are currently being planned.