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The Level of Vacancy on Moscow Warehouse Market is Likely to Decrease to 8% by the End of 2016

February 08, 2016, 12:07 (PX Newswire)

The amount of deliveries of warehouse space in Moscow region in Q4 2015 was only 129,000 sq m or almost five times less compared to the volumes over the same period last year (around 663,000 sq m), says JLL. The total volume of new supply of warehouse space in 2015 in Moscow region was about 0.8m sq m which was almost two times lower than in 2014.

In terms of geographic location, the biggest increase was seen in the southern and northern directions of the Moscow Region with a 27% and 19% share in the total amount of deliveries over 2014 respectively. Among the biggest deliveries in 2015 there were new premises in “PNK – Chekhov 3” industrial park (102,000 sq m of warehouse space), “PNK – Bekasovo” industrial park (71,000 sq m) on southern direction, “Kholmogory” industrial park (phase I, 92,000 sq m) and “Logopark Sever – 2” industrial park (24,700 sq m) on northern direction and “Kievskoye-22” logistics park (phase I; 42,000 sq m) on western direction. As a result, the total stock of high quality warehouse space in Moscow region reached 12m sq m.

According to JLL analysts, the pipeline of high quality warehouse space for 2016 is estimated at 0.7m sq m. In case all pipeline will be commissioned this year, the amount of new deliveries will be the least one over the last four years. Moreover, half of it has been already either leased out or sold at the early stage of construction.

“Most of developers are not ready to start speculative construction due to the lack of actual demand as well as considerable amount of vacant space on the market. A current low level of rents (nearly $50) for new warehouse space curbs development activity.” – Petr Zaritskiy, Regional Director, Head of Warehouse and Industrial Department, JLL, Russia and CIS, commented. – “Therefore, we will likely see further decrease in the amount of new deliveries in 2017-2018 period while the majority of future supply is represented by built-to-suit schemes, implying the construction begins only in case of actual demand for warehouse space.”

At the same time, demand for warehouse space in Moscow Region in 2015 saw a notable YoY surge – the volume of total transactions for warehouse space in 2015 totaled to 1.3m sq m, which represents an almost 40% increase compared to the levels of 2014 and was slightly less the result of 2013.

Over the Q4 2015, the total take-up volumes for warehouse space were 295,000 sq m implying roughly 22% YoY drop and 60% QoQ fall compared to the record volumes of demand in Q3 2015 (712,000 sq m). Several considerable transactions contributed positively to the average size of warehouse deal which was 16,400 sq m in 2015 or 40% more than the average size in 2014 (11,700 sq m).

Retailers became the main driver of demand for the new warehouse space – nearly half of all transactions for new warehouse space in 2015 was done by retail sector, including the largest transactions for new warehouse space such as the purchase of 120,000 sq m by adidas Group in “PNK – Chekhov 2” industrial park, the lease of 66,000 sq m by X5 Retail Group in “Sofyino” logistics park, lease of 55,000 sq m by Dixi in “A-Terminal” logistics park and the lease of 40,000 sq m by Globus retail chain in “Kholmogory” industrial park. Distribution and logistics companies accounted for 19% and 13% of all transactions respectively.

By the end of 2015, the level of vacancy rates in existing warehouse premises marginally increased to 10.5% compared to 10% seen in Q3 2015. Nonetheless, in terms of annual dynamics the growth in vacancy rate was quite notable – approximately 2 pp. from 7.9% seen in the end of 2014.

“The vacancy rate reached its local maximum in Q2 2015 when it was about 11.2%.” – commented Petr Zaritskiy. – “In case occupier activity stays moderate with the amount of take-up in warehouse space being at 0.85-0.9m sq m for the entire year, the overall vacancy could decrease to 8% by the end of 2016, however the pace of decrease will likely be slow. In longer-term we are likely to see a gradual improvement in vacancy as market becomes tighter.”

Over the course of Q4, the average level of asking rents for new deals in Class A stood unchanged compared to the level of rents in Q3, at RUB4,000 sq m per year (triple net), yet the decrease in YoY terms was far more significant (about 11%). The level of prime rents was around RUB4,200 sq m per year (triple net) compared to RUB4,500 sq m (triple net) in Q3 and RUB5,000 (triple net) in the end of 2014. The actual level of rents varies quite significantly depending on the particular object and its location with the relatively expensive supply located on the most demanded locations (e.g. those close to Moscow Small Ring highway).

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