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2019-11-26 9:00 CET, Europe, Germany | Property Investment Management | Press release

Partnership Catella Residential IM and Elithis to build 100 ‘Energy-Positive’ Residential Towers in Europe

One Hundred Elithis ‘Energy-Positive’ Resi Towers to Rise over European Skylines from €2 billion Catella Residential IM Investment Pipeline

CRIM and Elithis will start developing their first three residential towers in Dijon, St Etienne and Montevrain in France in 2020, and plan to launch three additional schemes in the French market later next year. Other European cities will follow in 2021. Energy-positive towers are buildings that generate more energy than tenants consume.

Xavier Jongen, Managing Director at CRIM, said: “Major European cities are facing an affordability housing crisis, particularly for younger people flocking to the big urban centres for education and work, because residential supply is nowhere close to meeting the huge demand. We believe that Catella’s partnership with Elithis offers a blueprint for one potential solution to this crisis, which is fragmenting the social fabric of our cities, while also addressing the other great challenge of our times in global climate change. This can only be achieved by harnessing the financial firepower of institutional investors who are now realising the great untapped investment potential of European residential markets. Not only do these investments offer stable, long-term and low-risk rental income-based returns, they also allow pension funds, insurers and others to meet their increasing obligations to target investments that make a positive social and environmental impact.”    

Elithis is a world leader in the design and development of energy-positive buildings, while Catella manages the largest cross-border residential real estate investment platform in Europe, with total assets of close to €4.0 billion over nine countries. By combining forces, the two partners have been able to offer a European residential investment proposition that is unprecedented in its scale, as well as its ambitions in sustainability and social responsibility, in the sector.  

Thierry Bievre, CEO Elithis, said: “For more than 10 years, we have been conceiving, designing and developing energy-positive buildings. Our energy-positive office tower delivered in Dijon in 2009 was the first of this type in the world and still outperforms industry regulatory requirements and standard certifications. After achieving that milestone, we were able to enhance our conceptual model and deliver the world’s first energy-positive residential tower in 2018: the Elithis Danube Tower in Strasbourg. Our landmark agreement with Catella will help us broaden our base, and further consolidate our construction expertise and ability to develop affordable residential buildings incorporating a virtuous energy and carbon emission cycle.”

CRIM has made an initial equity commitment for investment into three residential towers on behalf of its specialist residential funds. Some 36 sites have been identified in France for development and the partners are aiming to deliver a total of 50 projects in major urban centres throughout the country. The first projects outside France will be launched in 2021 as part of a strategy to develop a further 50 energy-positive residential towers across European markets over the next decade.

Under the terms of the partnership, every new tower that is built will seek to be better than the previous one, by embedding ‘continuous improvement’ practices into the development process. The towers will also be built in such a way that they can easily be converted for other functions than residential use, should this be necessary. Despite all the sustainable features, the construction costs are no higher than for a regular residential tower.

The technology employed in the buildings (photovoltaic panels and a bioclimatic design which aims to protect the environment and natural resources) renders them energy positive from the outset. Each tower developed by the partners will reward individual efforts in sustainability through smart artificial intelligence applications. Not only will the inhabitants have the ability to totally or partially eliminate their energy bills, which will allow an average French family to save around €1,600 per year, but they will also benefit from the lower operating costs of the tower thanks to the least expensive technological choices in terms of maintenance.

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About Catella Residential Investment Management GmbH (CRIM)

Catella Residential Investment Management (CRIM) initiated its first one billion-euro European residential fund in 2007 and this has produced average net returns for investors of 8.2% a year since launch until end-Q3 2019. CRIM launched Catella’s first specialised European Student Housing Fund in 2013.

CRIM is a subsidiary of Swedish Catella AB in Stockholm and its residential real estate business includes advisory services in portfolio management, acquisition and sales, and asset management. The company manages and advises several funds and mandates with assets under management of close to €4 billion across nine countries in Europe.

About Elithis

Based in Dijon, the Elithis Group is a French building engineering and consulting group which ranks among the leading players in the fields of energy and environmental efficiency. The Group has traditionally supported construction and renovation firms operating in the energy and engineering sectors with solutions that are innovative, sustainable and competitive. Elithis has more than 200 employees worldwide and has worked on over 2,500 projects over the last 10 years.  

For more information contact:

Lisette van der Ham
Head of PR & Corporate Communications
Catella Residential Investment Management GmbH
Upper West, Kantstraße 164, 10623 Berlin
M: +31 (0)6 83200561