Retail Real Estate Experts talk about their life and career on Bayfield Training Blog.
Senior Relationship Manager, The Local Data Company
PATRICIA: Before joining Local Data Company, you worked at IBM Global Services. How did you decide to develop your career in the retail property sector?
NELIA: My role at IBM helped me realise that one of my biggest strength is the ability to build lasting relationships with people of all backgrounds. I needed a career in a fast-moving sector with an innovative company. I found that the retail sector offers exactly that- variety, constant change and challenges that we can work towards solving with the client. LDC being an innovative technology company was a great place to start from!
PATRICIA:LDC mainly works in the UK. What type of foreign companies/professionals do you usually attract and which factors do you think encourage them to choose LDC?
NELIA:Unlike most companies, LDC is a data creator rather than just an aggregator. That means we offer the highest quality of data which can be analysed to serve multiple sectors. We work with international retailers looking to launch/expand in the UK, investors that have limited understanding of the UK commercial real estate market and wish to get a view on the asset classes and the retail environment and general. Last but not least, we work with global brands like Coca Cola, Tom Tom and Google that need the highest quality of data all the time!
PATRICIA: You work closely with institutional investors, private equity, banks, landlords and developers. Has the Shopping Centre Investment course helped you to understand their needs better?
NELIA: Yes, it has certainly helped me! Although I spend most of my time working with asset managers and investors in the due diligence, I found the course extremely useful as it helped me build a full view of the factors/areas that are taken into consideration in the process. It also helped me understand the importance of each of these steps and how the process works in real life. Being thought by practitioners with relevant experience is what I beliece makes this course truly unique and most importantly gives actionable insight to the sector.
PATRICIA: LDC currently provides an online database for location analysis, asset management and portfolio analysis, and also footfall devices. What are the future plans for Local Data Company? Are you planning to provide new products?
NELIA: Yes, we are developing out proposition constantly. This year we are releasing a new version of the Health Index in partnership with Morgan Stanley, as well as improved demographics and spend data. We are also releasing off the shelf reports (tenant targeters and gap analysis) to support asset managers and agents identifying and attracting suitable tenants.
Finally, last week we have launched our Footfall Heat Map which enables investors and occupiers to get a view on footfall dynamics across 100 towns in Great Britain
PATRICIA: You have presented at and attended our Shopping Centre Investment course. Who would you recommend our shopping centre investment course to?
NELIA: I think the course is relevant for anyone with exposure to commercial real estate – starting from the obvious asset managers all the way to fund managers and even marketing and facilities managers.
PATRICIA: After attending the course, has your view about the shopping centres changed?
NELIA: Indeed, I now understand it is a much more complicated process than I initially thought it was!