It is worth noting that 84% of the rent roll in the BlackBee portfolio is managed by RQTwo is either government or blue chip corporate. It is this cashflow that provides the stable base for the associated investments. Smaller tenants may experience difficulties in their sectors which is where a strong and empowered property manager such as RQTwo can work to minimise impact on cashflows. The focus of BlackBee’s commercial property strategy remains office-based, minimising retail exposure therefore lessening the impact of reduced footfall and circulation in the current environment.
Simon Kelly has provided a view detailing the impact of Covid-19 on commercial property in general which informs and indicates the resilience of this sector.
Love in the Time of Corona
By Simon Kelly
When I wrote Breakfast with Anglo in early 2010 I had firmly fallen out of love with the property business. The market by then had swallowed me up and spat me out. Against this background, I sat down in the eerie silence of that Spring and I began to write my story. Writing is really about looking into your soul and that’s why I wrote Breakfast With Anglo. It was never about sales, brief moments of fame, money, or agitating the establishment. I wanted to find out what I really felt, look at what really happened and work out how I had made such a mess of it all. The story was about the ups and downs, the big deals, the good and bad deals, and the buildings….lots and lots of buildings.
The pain of the crash was so deep that it took me many years to reconcile myself with it and to decide if and how I would reengage…..and I did re-engage. The purgatory of Nama gave me the time to really reflect on what I would do differently, and this 2020 crash is going to be a real test of all of these beliefs.
Property in a time of Covid
We all live, work, and breathe property and it’s a vital part of every aspect of our lives. Most of us never really consider how it’s made and to many it’s just there, switched on, and silently doing its job. It’s like air. We walk in and out of it but never really consider the human endeavor behind every building. The miracle of steel and concrete that makes our modern cities. It’s like electricity, but better. In Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, shelter and security are up there right after food and water. That my business….the property business.
Even now, in the middle of this crisis, we need buildings to care for the sick, distribute the food, and to house the firms that will crack the code and deliver the vaccine. Buildings are a vital part of our modern society and this separates us from our past and secures our future.
Hotels become hospitals.
Offices provide the workspaces to beat the virus, and rebuild the economy.
Universities train the next generation to be better.
Homes are our shelter, to house and protect us and our loved ones.
Every building will have many stories to tell from this crisis. They are the Oak trees in the forest.
Property after Covid
Post Covid, Ireland will again take its place in the modern world. Our economy feeds Europe, and our technology companies will continue to grow and expand as the world gets increasingly digital. Young Europeans will flock here to work for Google, Facebook and Amazon. Everything that made us successful in January 2020, will make us successful again in January 2021. New modern buildings will always be required to meet the needs of our growing economy. More hospitals, more nursing beds, more homes and offices. These buildings will be based on the fundamental principle of investor returns and property will continue to be the best way to deliver safe stable investor returns. As the VIX breaks through 80 in Chicago and stocks collapse, Property is doing exactly whats it is meant to do. Its the Oak tree in the forest of flimsy paper assets. Debt-free, its delivers returns year after year.
The HSE contacted us today looking for hotel beds to rent as hospital beds. That if nothing else shows the real value of real assets.