Financing platform for the collective reuse of real estate
The reuse and reallocation of existing buildings is an important challenge within the theme of the circular city. The strategic reallocation of buildings contributes directly and indirectly to greater circularity. Directly because many different raw materials (materials, energy, space) are reused. Indirectly, because practice shows that social reallocation projects form an important spatial, economic and mental framework for various other circular processes.
Miss Miyagi specialises in initiating and coordinating bottom-up redevelopment projects with social added value. We are committed to giving commercially 'undevelopable' buildings (often threatened with demolition) a socially relevant and economically profitable redevelopment. The right match between the buildings to be redeveloped, the users and the investors is of great importance. We have already developed a digital real estate platform for this crucial matchmaking between buildings and users.
With this project, we want to investigate the possibility of integrating bottom-up forms of financing in the platform, and test this with a number of concrete cases. In this way, we can scale up our reuse method and make an even more significant contribution to the transition to a circular city.
In concrete terms, we first want to gain insight into the various existing forms of financing and the possibilities and limitations for real estate development and reuse projects. On that basis, we want to set up a legal structure that is suitable as an investment fund. Next, we want to develop a digital prototype of the investment platform and test that platform in three cases.
PartnersCera CVBA, Bart Vanhaeren, Stad Leuven (dienst Onroerend Erfgoed)
We have set up the first cooperative investment fund in Flanders that focuses on the social reallocation of real estate. This makes a positive contribution, both directly and indirectly, to the transition to a more circular economy.
Currently, we have three concrete reallocation projects running, including the realisation of an incubator for circular economy on a polluted site. The total investment cost is more than 20 million euro.
We have already raised 700,000 euros for the realisation of our reuse projects. Our ambition is to collect around €3 million by 2022.
We have focused on disseminating our project and methodology through various (local, national and international) publications, lectures and debates.
MOST IMPORTANT LESSONS LEARNED
Integrating a financing component into a service model has major consequences for the internal and external functioning of an organisation.
Integrating a financing component into an organisation that focuses on innovation and experimentation sometimes contrasts with the demand for security from investors.
Our approach of discussing our innovative ideas with external parties as much as possible and testing them in reality as soon as possible proved to be a great advantage in the development of the fund.
We have gained a lot of insight into banking legislation, legal structures and the financial world in general. The realisation that we are in a debt-driven economy with artificially low interest rates was a confirmation of our starting point to look for new forms of value creation.
40investors at the start
3million target capital after 2 years
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD?
Although the operational roll-out of the project is still in its infancy, it looks promising: the concrete redevelopment projects and already subscribed investors show that we have aroused the interest of very diverse stakeholders.
The intention is to scale up the fund in the coming years to five to ten projects with a total value of more than EUR 50 million.