The traditional real estate chain is highly susceptible to change. Increasingly, clients are looking for a real estate partner that approaches development, advice, design and execution from the viewpoint of an integrated vision. Only one thing is left to the client: concentrating on quality and an office or building that is genuinely suited to the company and its people. Construction & Real Estate director Peter Krop talks about Dura Vermeer as an integrated real estate partner.

What are the most important trends in commercial real estate?

"There are a number of clearly recognisable developments. Clients and their real estate advisers are increasingly looking for locations themselves and are therefore cutting out the project developer. In addition, they are looking for different and new types of real estate concept. Innovative concepts that suit the flexibility associated with place- and time-independent working. The building itself must be sustainable – and ideally circular – and have an iconic, stylish character that matches the client’s image. But perhaps the most important trend is that clients want a party that can take responsibility from the outset, development of the project, right up to the end, delivery including furnishings."

How does a client benefit from an integrated solution?

"Much of the aforementioned is a result of classic bad experiences among clients. Because if different partners are responsible for different parts of a project, it is difficult to maintain an overview. You then run the risk of going over schedule, incurring extra costs and the building not quite ending up as the architect originally envisioned. That’s why we decided, around 10 years ago, to explicitly focus on integrated collaboration and to work with integrated forms of contract, like Design & Build. In this way, the client gets the best product quicker and at a lower price – because there are fewer costs associated with failures since the client joins the process much earlier and is aligned with it throughout."

What does Dura Vermeer do differently to other development and construction firms?

"Partly due to our solid financial base, we are one of the few parties in the market that can take responsibility for a project from start to finish, also as a risk-bearing partner. Furthermore, we really do work together. We don’t design for but with our clients: we understand their challenges and can act accordingly. In recent years, we have developed and built dozens of high-profile iconic buildings for (inter)national clients.

These include the AkzoNobel building, the Stibbe head office at Amsterdam’s South Axis, the Centre for Simulator Maritime Training (CSMART) for Carnival Corporation in Almere and Fluor in Hoofddorp. But we’ve also worked with Unilever on the new Global Foods Innovation Centre in Wageningen and the Genmab building in Utrecht.

This means that clients can rely on our expertise and on a team that is 100% committed to their project. Our commitment starts before we even enter into a contract; if we believe in a project, we are prepared to invest in it."

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Peter Krop, Director Division Construction & Real Estate - about building for people

'We don’t design for our clients, but with them: we understand their challenges and can act accordingly.'