Europe Israel Group to Invest Euro 1 billion in Romania Real Estate

Dambovita Center, a EUR 600 M investment, wants to be Bucharest’s main symbol
Nine O’Clock November 2, 2007
by Anca Bernovici

BUCHAREST – Plaza Center is going to invest over EUR 600 M in the Dambovita Center project the developer wants to become a symbol for the Capital City. The Israeli company has informed a press conference that it was going to invest EUR 1 bln in five estate developments in Romania, the one in Bucharest included, over the following two years. “This year we have started five real estate developments – in Timisoara, Miercurea Ciuc, Iasi, Slatina and Bucharest in which we plan to invest around EUR 1 bn. The Dambovita Center project is the most important of them all, as the invested value amounts to over EUR 600 M,” the President of Europe Israel Group that controls the Plaza Centers company, Mordechay Zisser, stated at the launching of the Dambovita Center, yesterday.

He noted that the five projects were all in the phase of obtaining permits and authorisations and that the work would last nearly two years according to the complexity of each particular project, the exception to that being the development in Bucharest that will be completed in 2011.

The Dambovita Center project will stand on 600,000 sq m and will consist of a shopping centre of 120,000 sq m, two office buildings of 40 floors each, a five-star hotel of 320 rooms and an aparthotel of 115 rooms, plus a 35,000 sq m residential area.

Work on the Dambovita Center may start in the former half of next year, after getting all the necessary permits and authorisations, and will last 40 months, meaning 3 years.

‘We have already obtained some of the permits and we hope to have them all before the end of this year. The development will be completed within 40 months of obtaining it,’ said Zisser. He further stated that the project would be done in one phase although similarly complex developments are normally completed in several stages.

The complex will be developed by the Dambovita Center company in which Plaza Centers company of Israel holds 75 per cent, the National Investment Company (CNI) manages 15 per cent of the registered capital, the balance being property of Cenk Demir of Turkey. The public-private partnership agreement was concluded in 2003, and, at the end of 2006, an additional deed was signed whereby Plaza Centers became shareholder of the Dambovita Center and took over the project management. The additional deed foresees the building of 11,000 sq m of office space that will be given to CNI. The Dambovita Center project will become property of the Romanian state after 49 years.

The Europe-Israel Group officials also informed that the Bucharest Hotel that it was developing would open in the beginning of 2008, the investment being EUR 140 M.