There are only four names if we look at the top 10 biggest new transactions in the past year – Panattoni, CTP Invest, Prologis and HOYA, with the latter having only one entry in the form of a storage hall for the retail Ahold business chain.
Panattoni Park Cheb
The largest transaction that took place had to definitely be the Panattoni Park Cheb in West Bohemia, where Tchibo pre-leased 73,000 m2 for its distribution centre. In the first phase, Tchibo plans to store, sort, package and dispatch goods for the Czech market only. Later supply will spread across Central and Eastern Europe and southern Germany. The first part is already in operation, while the second part will be completed in the first half of this year. Upon completion, the hall will have the honour of being the second largest logistics hall in the Czech Republic. After completion, it will be almost the same size as Charles Square in Prague. By the way, the industrial park in Cheb where the new building is located was awarded as the best in Central Europe this year by the CIJ Awards in 2017.
The area around Prague is still expanding
The developer CTP Invest was right behind with four transactions with a total area of over one hundred and twenty thousand square meters. More than half of the area is occupied by a storage hall not far from Prague, which Macro Cash & Carry leased in advance. The hall should be completed in the second half of this year. The wholesale chain wants to run a semi-automatic distribution centre here, where robotic support will also be supplemented by warehouse staff. Another major player in 2016 was Prologis, who signed a deal with HP-Tronic at Jirny near Prague for the pre-lease of 30,000 square meters. At the end of 2016, Prologis completed the construction of two halls for Sportisimo measuring 17 and 16 thousand square meters in a logistics park in Rudná u Prahy. HOYA also ranks among the 10 biggest transactions, which has begun building a new distribution centre for Ahold in Březhrad near Hradec Králové with a total area of 21,000 square meters.
Manufacturing companies are alternating between e-commerce and retail
It is also interesting to look at how the portfolio of tenants of large halls is changing. While previously industrial companies were in demand (and industrial areas that were called industrial zones), today their size and accompanying services are increasingly valued by e-commerce and retail companies, whether it be Tchibo, Ahold or Sportisimo, or other companies , which concluded new lease agreements last year. For example, Penny Market or Lidl from retail, or Internet marketers like Mall, ZOOT, or Basket which have recently decided to move.
“The demand for new halls in the Czech Republic still accounts for about half of the production companies, but the number of e-commerce interested parties has increased significantly in the past year. This state of affairs reflects the situation in neighbouring countries where the development is similar,” said Lukáš Šaling, Associate Director at CBRE, adding, “e-commerce has brought one new development to constructing premises, the need for large storage space. Demand for halls of thirty to fifty thousand square meters is not uncommon.”