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Panos Danos: Why Foreign Investors Invest in Cyprus

Panos Danos: Why Foreign Investors Invest in Cyprus

Panos Danos, CEO of DANOS / BNP Paribas Real Estate talks us through why Foreign investors are investing in Cyprus and how they’re going about it. His job is to provide an educational service and give clients the information they need to make an investment decision. This encourages strong, lasting relationships which incite clients to keep coming back to the firm for buying and then later selling their assets.

 

Can you tell us about your role and what it involves?

I am the CEO of DANOS GROUP an alliance of BNP Paribas Real Estate, which looks after investors looking to buy or sell assets outside of their domestic markets. We cover all sources of capital coming into Cyprus, notably Asian and Gulf investors through our BNPPRE international network, but also North American and pan-European investors. I am personally focused on investments related to Cyprus, working hand in hand with DANOS local investment team to source cross-border investment opportunities that match our clients’ strategy. Despite primarily focusing on investment transactions, this is more a relationship management role than a pure brokerage position.

I started working with DANOS in Greece and have recently moved over to the offices in Cyprus. This was important as several clients are actively looking to invest in the Cyprus market, and conveniently here are also a number of specialists working for international funds. This has in turn allowed me to continue working with clients I knew in Greece, but also develop the Cyprus side of the business.     

 

What are currently the most important things that you are working on?

At the moment I am managing the sale of two assets in Limassol   on behalf of one of our key investors, along with the DANOS Limassol Investment team. We have been building up the relationship with this client for more than two years and following a successful transaction, they have trusted us in Greece. 

With clients, it’s often the case that they will know which country they want to invest in but perhaps not which city or asset type, so it’s my job to provide that educational service and give clients the information they need to make an investment decision. This encourages strong, lasting relationships which incite clients to keep coming back to us for buying and then later selling their assets. 

 

What can you tell us about the typical profile of a foreign investor?

Europe, Russia and China have a very strong and diversified investor base. They tend to be from insurance companies, Investment Managers, SCPI, REITs, and there are the growing pension fund sector and private individuals. Foreign investors are traditionally cautious and tend to focus on property in Cyprus.  

 

What can you tell us about Foreign investors investing in Cyprus? What would be the reasons for doing so?

To start, the first reason is the quality of life and the citizenship plan. Those who have already invested in Cyprus are subsequently looking to diversify their portfolio. They’ve generally taken what they consider to be enough risk abroad and therefore want to look for something abroad that offers a risk-return balance that they might not be able to find elsewhere. This allows them to become international players, and in some cases get higher returns than from their assets in abroad. 

Since 2014 we have seen an acceleration of foreign investment by investors to around € 4 billion. DANOS / BNP Paribas Real Estate is very adapted to respond to the changing strategies of our investors. Our international approach and acute knowledge of the various markets and asset types allow us to understand and perfectly respond to the aims of each of our investors and therefore provide the support and guidance that is needed for foreign investment.  

 

What are the top places that these investors are investing in? Why?

Limassol has been the top destination for Foreign capital for four or five years now, as it is seen as the most developed market. Following Limassol, Foreign investors tend to go for Paphos, Larnaca, Ammochostos and Nicosia. In all places, Foreign investors are mainly looking for residential, offices, hotels and retail and in some specialist cases, logistics. 

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