Magazine article Journal of Property Management

New Value: Customized Management of Business Centers in Russia

Magazine article Journal of Property Management

New Value: Customized Management of Business Centers in Russia

Article excerpt

Historically, office building management practices in Russia have developed step by step and evolved over time through practical application. Today, Russian developers have learned from their past mistakes and are producing high quality projects. As these quality projects gain in number, another problem has emerged--making office buildings attractive to tenants in a competitive marketplace that is quickly becoming saturated.

As we look to compete, innovative ideas become everything. In addition to specialization in high quality professionally managed office buildings, we constantly look for ways to add value for the tenant. One way we do this is by catering to and encouraging the formation of specialized business centers, or groupings, of like-businesses in a shared area or neighborhood.

BUSINESS CLUSTERS ADD TENANT VALUE

Grouping businesses together by specialization is not a new concept. In certain areas, such groupings have emerged without advanced planning. For example, in Moscow, there are centers that have naturally formed close to the main train stations--Leningradsky, Yaroslavski and Kazansky--because historically, the Russian Railways built administrative offices there. Following suit, many affiliated companies, partners, contractors, and transportation and logistics companies decided to reside there as well. This means that businesses built in this particular area all have some affiliation with the Russian Railways. Although this area is not prestigious from the standpoint of its location, it has become a specialized center for the railway, and as a result, building owners there have been able to raise rental rates, targeting a specific group of tenants. These specialized business centers also help to curb traffic jams, because associated businesses are all housed in close proximity to each other. This aspect is an important benefit of a specialized center as traffic has become a serious concern in Moscow.

SYNERGY AS A MARKETING TECHNIQUE

A similar center exists in the southwestern part of Moscow. Initially, Gazprom, one of the largest gas companies in the world, settled there. After that, a number of companies seeking business ties with Gazprom became its neighbors. They were all satisfied working there together because it saved time and resources. When leasing space was available in this area, it was always marketed as being "next to Gazprom. …

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