After becoming well established in Belgium, Equilis began its European expansion in 2014. This geographical diversification started with Spain and France, and now leads to a strong presence in six European countries. A way to perpetuate the company but also to export its know-how!
Since its creation in 2006, Equilis has continued to evolve. The developer was initially active in Belgium in the retail sector, and first expanded its activities to residential projects in 2010 before starting a European expansion in 2014.
“Just like the start of our residential activity, our international development was a natural fit with our ambition to diversify the company and consolidate its future,” emphasizes Olivier Beguin, CEO of Equilis Europe.
Equilis began with two international locations in Spain and France in 2014. Then, the developer also set up in the Netherlands and Poland in 2017, and finally in Germany in 2019. As a result, Equilis is now present in 6 European countries where it develops mixed-use and innovative projects.
“The decision to enter in a new territory is not initially linked to an opportunity to develop a project there,” says Olivier Beguin.
“The opening of a new country is decided by the shareholders on the basis of in-depth studies, numerous site visits and the identification of potential. Once a country has been validated, a local team is set up to find and implement projects.”
In recent years, for example, Equilis has opened the Finestrelles shopping center in Spain, or the Galeria Andrychów and the Galeria Chełm in Poland. It has also contributed to the development of the Monteux Urban Development Zone in France with residential and commercial projects, and is also leveraging its rehabilitation expertise in several countries. For example, Equilis is renovating a historic building in the heart of Madrid to offer luxury apartments, and has created 166 apartments in a former office building in Eindhoven, the Netherlands.
A strong local presence
By working with local teams, Equilis ensures that it develops projects that are relevant to the local area and its residents.
As Olivier Beguin points out, “Each country and region is different, and it is necessary to have a strong local presence in order to develop a network and a good understanding of the specific characteristics of these areas.”
The European subsidiaries therefore have a great deal of autonomy in their work, which allows them to innovate and adapt to local markets.
At the same time, an independent entity, Equilis Europe, has been created to ensure consistency in strategy and investments in the various countries. “The launch of a project is validated by the European structure, the country entity, and the shareholders,” says Olivier Beguin. “Equilis Europe also oversees various cross-cutting issues and supports the development of each country. It also centralizes the majority of available funds, which is why it is involved in investment decisions.”
Thanks to this global and local strategy, Equilis has succeeded in establishing a solid presence in six European countries in just a few years. Its current ambition is to perpetuate these activities with sustainable projects that are adapted to local needs and new lifestyles. In short, projects that correspond to Equilis’ DNA!