Christian Ulbrich – Jones Lang LaSalle, Inc.
I would say we have an ideal environment to invest in real estate
“That’s a long question. I’ll try to answer that. I would say overall the market is still very healthy. I mean we have an almost ideal environment to invest into real estate. Interest rates are incredibly low. The outlook for interest rates continue to be low. I mean when you look what happened to oil price over the last couple of days, they’re coming in again very much. So the outlook for interest rates will continue to be attractive from that end.
Now we saw that there was a bit of a hesitation with some investors at this point of the cycle. So it takes longer now to close deals than it did a year ago, but we think that is a healthy development because we rather want a healthy development which continues to be there for a couple of more years in this cycle than that things are going over the top.”
Very happy with business in China and India
“We were obviously very, very happy with our business in China and India. There was a lot of debate around how China will do, and whether they will be able to continue their growth momentum, and I think they have probably surprised a lot of people in the world, how they were coming in the first three months in their overall GDP performance. And, we can see it in our business; our activities in China are really, really strong, people are upbeat. And the same applies to India. I don’t know how closely you follow India, but they are really taking some important actions from the political side, and again that plays really well for the real estate sector in India.”
UK strong too
“The other one which certainly was a bit of a positive surprise, not to me personally I have to say, but let’s say to the wider perception, was the performance in the UK, because with all what’s going on in the UK, and you could have thought that the UK would slowdown in the real estate performance, but they didn’t. I mean we had a really strong start to the year and we hope that continues. Now we have the election coming up, let’s see whether that will slow it a little bit down. But overall, that was a bit of a positive surprise.”