Riga Shopping Centre / Hili Properties

Hili Properties plc Managing Director George Kakouras has highlighted the real estate group’s “record performance” in 2022, a year in which it has focused on expanding its portfolio to a number of key European cities.

His comments came as part of Hili Properties’ Annual Report for 2022, in which it posted a pre-tax profit of €6.8 million, an increase of 80.8 per cent from 2021’s €3.8 million. A large part of this increase came as a result of an influx in revenue, with the figure rising from €8.2 million in 2021 to €12.2 million in 2022. Expenses were also on the rise in 2022 as cost of sales and administrative expenses increased to €674,038 (2021: €484,370) and €3.3 million (2021: €3 million), respectively.

Hili Properties, the strategic real estate investment subsidiary of Hili Ventures, also registered a significant increase in finance costs, going up by €1.2 million to €4.7 million in 2022, primarily due to rising interest on bank loans of €2.6 million (2021: €1.6 million).

Over the course of 2022, the group’s net assets expanded sharply from €110.9 million to €124.9 million, representing an increase of 12.7 per cent.

Mr Kakouras remarked that the performance in 2022, the first full year since Hili Properties’ Initial Public Offering, represents a “record” year for the group in terms of revenues.

George Kakouras / LinkedIn
Hili Properties plc Managing Director George Kakouras / LinkedIn

“We remained committed to our mission of investing in high-quality assets to generate attractive returns for our shareholders over the long term,” he explained.

“Throughout the year, we continued to focus on expanding our reach in key cities in Europe’s most exciting markets while maintaining our commitment to exceptional property management and customer service to all our tenants operating from our properties,” he said.

Mr Kakouras emphasised that the group’s teams worked “tirelessly” during 2022 to ensure that it has a “positive impact” on the communities in which its properties are based, and it has managed to “enhance” its reputation as a “trustworthy and reliable commercial real estate owner in the industry”.

He stated that Hili Properties witnessed “steady growth” in its portfolio of properties over 2022, with new acquisitions driving its “overall success”.

Hili Properties undertook the management of 19,000 square metres of industrial property in Lithuania in January 2022, which has since been developed into a 50,000-square metre land plot in the country’s “largest free economic zone”. It is being leased to REHAU, an international construction, automotive and industrial industry solutions provider.

The group also acquired a 7,863-square metre shopping centre in Riga, Latvia in March 2022, which was built on 21,580 square metres of land. RIMI hypermarket along with other retail operators currently operate from the shopping centre, which is situated in one of Riga’s “most densely populated residential areas”.

Hili Properties also completed the acquisition of 75 per cent of MIRO, in Bucharest Romania last August. It is a mixed-use property developed in the Baneasa area with around 23,000 square metres of leasable area across five levels.

Mr Kakouras also made reference to the group’s full acquisition of 92,000 square metres of land in Bengħajsa next to Malta Freeport in April 2022.

“In parallel in 2022 we sold three of our real estate shopping centres in Riga, in line with our strategy to optimise our portfolio, and introduce more sustainable properties,” he added.

Mr Kakouras highlighted that the group made “significant progress” in its sustainability efforts during 2022, implementing new green technologies and initiatives that have helped it “contribute to a more sustainable future”.

“Our company offices across the countries in which we operate are housed in sustainable buildings. Electric vehicle charging stations have been installed in our Malta head office, while recycling stations were installed in our RIMI shopping centres in Latvia. Solar panel installations are currently underway in MIRO, Romania and our shopping centre DOLE in Latvia,” he confirmed.

Looking ahead to the future, Mr Kakouras outlined the group’s aim to continue building on its “success and deliver value” to its shareholders.

“Irrespective of the challenges that commercial real estate currently faces with rising interest rates that result in increased financing costs and affect value of the properties, we own a solid portfolio of property assets which provide strong cash flows,” he added.

He noted that Hili Properties remains “committed” to its “core values of integrity, care, ambition, innovation, and impact for good”, and will continue to monitor market conditions to identify sales or acquisitions of assets that will “build further resilience” for the group.

Concluding, he thanked the group’s employees for their “hard work and commitment” which have been “instrumental” to Hili Properties’ success. He also expressed gratitude to the shareholders and partners for their “ongoing support and confidence” in the group.

Mr Kakouras joined Hili Properties as Managing Director in August 2020, having gained extensive international management and leadership experience from various companies, including at Intralot Group and Maltco Lotteries. He holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master in Engineering in Electrical and Computer Engineering, both from National Technical University of Athens. He also graduated with a Master of Business Administration in Engineering Economic Systems from the same university.

Featured Image:

One of Hili Properties' shopping centres in Riga, Latvia / Hili Properties

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