[Report] Middle East Investment in Europe up by 25 Percent on H1 2013
Europe is rapidly becoming a hub for Middle East investment after $7.9 billion made its way west in the first half of this year, up 25 percent on the same period in 2013.
A report by Colliers International found that the Middle East accounted for 13 percent of investment in Europe coming from outside of the continent.
John D. Davis, chief executive officer, Middle East & North Africa at Colliers International, said: “Middle Eastern buyers are increasingly prepared to venture outside Central London, looking at alternative asset classes such as hotels and serviced apartments in other tier 1 cities.”
“Recent examples include Qatar Investment Authority’s acquisition of five more properties to its hotel portfolio, located in Cannes, Madrid, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and Rome, while Qatar Armed Forces Investment Portfolio acquired the Hotel Renaissance in Barcelona for approximately €78 million.”
Middle East investors have also been busy in Central London, with China Life and Qatar Investment Authority taking a 90 percent interest (70 percent and 20 percent) in Clifford Chance HQ in Canary Wharf.
Colliers International expects this trend to continue, especially in the property market. Property consultant CBRE expects Middle Eastern investors to spend $180 billion on buying commercial property outside their own region over the next 10 years.
Europe, it is predicted, will receive some 80 percent of this sum.
Frictionless banking, the Salesforce way
Alan Donnelly has enjoyed a long and successful career in the IT and financial services industry. He has worked with banks, insurers, payments companies, fintechs and more in support of business transformation programmes for some of the biggest names in the business for the past 27 years.
Today, he’s head of financial services for Salesforce UK, the leading global, cloud-based CRM platform that integrates customers and companies. Donnelly is also currently leading the Salesforce operation that is digitally transforming the UK arm of the Madrid-based Santander Group.
“I have had the pleasure of working with many financia
l institutions over many years,” he says. “Typically, it was involved in helping customers build big banking systems and banking platforms that ran what we would call systems of record. But now, as I've moved into Salesforce and we're building our financial services business, we are really now helping our customers engage with their customers.”
The partnership withSantander is a multi channel operation that sees Salesforce helping the bank to engage better with corporate clients and retail customers via their branches and the internet, says Donnelly.
“We're also helping them with customers, who maybe wish to acquire mortgages and mortgages for the life events. I guess it's a multi connectivity environment. But in every case, Santander needs to understand the customer's requirements and better serve those customers in the right time and the right fashion,” Donnelly explains
He adds, “I also think the ability to contact customers whenever they need help and support, as we've seen in the recent pandemic, has proven critical - so I think technology is definitely much more connectable and effective than it was before.”