A report in The Times newspaper from this week’s big Mipim property festival in Cannes describes this year’s event as “Bacchanalian and windy…like a medieval fayre, but full of spivs in sunglasses and suits”.
Nevertheless, the annual gathering is the second biggest in Cannes after the film festival and could still be the catalyst the property market needs.
Regus chief executive Mark Dixon is not convinced, however, urging organiser Reed-MIDEM to return to its roots and attract more of the 100,000 corporate real estate directors in the world down to the Riviera.
Dixon claimed the event needed more “occupiers”, rather than development people from Rostock talking to the development people from Leeds.
On the upside, Jones Lang LaSalle reportedly brought a team 100-strong, five more than the number of local authorities in attendance. UK developers were also reportedly thick on the ground.
Drivers Jonas had just the one official delegate, having been taken to court for setting up shop opposite the show in a café. The original idea apparently constituted an exhibition stand in the eyes of the organisers…and more importantly, the judges.
Property Week said that the relative lack of entrepreneurial investors and banks this year would be “a worry” for the organisers. So while the event may be as glamorous as ever, with leggy East Europeans (wo)manning their country stands, the blurring between conference/exhibition and ‘show event’ would appear to be diluting the business value all round. Next year chocolate fountains all round?
London Mayor Boris Johnson, at least used Mipim to announce an Olympic land deal. Olympic Park land owned by the London Development Agency will be transferred to the Olympic Park Legacy Company, the body now charged with securing the future of the site.