March 13th saw the property industry descend en masse to Cannes for MIPIM, the annual international property conference. Despite this year’s event being surrounded by much speculation, overall consensus determines it was another resounding success, abuzz with enthusiasm and talk of many exciting projects in the pipeline.
In the weeks leading up to the event, the industry was awash with comparisons between the President’s Club and MIPIM. Discussions alluded that the event saw, and even condoned, the same levels of inappropriate behaviour that has been the focus in the media in recent months. Adair’s experience of MIPIM was quite the contrary. Many of the firm’s valued female contacts, who hold senior positions and are esteemed industry thought leaders, attended and found the trip as highly enjoyable and valuable as their male counterparts. It seems unfortunate for the event, and in turn industry, to be receiving further negative press that could impede the hard work of organisations such as NAWIC (National Association of Women in Construction) and WIP (Women in Property). These groups provide a valuable service in encouraging young women to recognise the fantastic career opportunities that the construction industry has to offer.
The presence of a new fleet of PropTech companies brought a vibrant edge to the conference with the industry becoming increasingly open to embracing the future. Traditional companies appeared to be slowly beginning to look to cutting-edge start-ups to take their business to the next level and build the future of property.
Brexit remained a key topic with a focus on ongoing uncertainty of workforce access, market volatility and reduced levels of or delays in investment. Conversation was on a whole positive, with many agreeing that if the government and industry work together we could deliver a construction industry that is robust enough to withstand any future political and economic uncertainty. Adair’s MD, Justin Sullivan, is utilising his roles within the RICS to work on initiatives that will assist in the delivery of this. At the forefront is the new standardised global measurement known as International Construction Measurement Standard (ICMS). Among many benefits, this will allow investors to compare like-for-like. More info here.
To summarise, as ever MIPIM provided an opportunity for the most influential players in the international property and construction industry to meet for a week of connecting with both new and familiar faces. Adair is already looking forward to returning in 2019. In the meantime, having now recovered from a whirlwind week, the team’s focus is on catching up with new contacts made. If you bumped in to Adair on La Croisette but didn’t have the chance to discuss business synergies in the sun please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a follow up meeting in London.