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News Release

London

EPRA environmental standards help power European listed real estate up global sustainability rankings as firms taking top awards double in a year


London, 24 September, 2014 – The number of listed property companies achieving the highest level of compliance with the European Public Real Estate Association’s best practice recommendations (BPR) in sustainability standards has doubled over the past year, reflected in 16 “Gold Awards” being made at EPRA’s annual conference in London on Wednesday.

The impact of the introduction of this touchstone for real estate firms in reducing their environmental footprint is being seen at a worldwide level with listed companies clearly outpacing private equity real estate funds in recording an average 7% higher performance within the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) survey results, released in early September. This survey also highlighted European listed real estate (54 points) outperforming its listed counterparts in Asia and North America (51 and 49 points respectively), while also closing the gap with global leader, Australia (68 points). The European listed sector also outperformed the European non-listed sector, with respective scores of 54 points and 48 points.

Andrew Saunders, Finance Director at EPRA said: “For the first time, the majority of European listed property companies are now reporting on at least one sustainability performance measure in 2014. The positive results of EPRA raising the bar in setting environmental standards are being seen all the way up to a global level, as we’ve witnessed in the recent GRESB survey results. The 16 companies achieving the Gold Standard in EPRA’s Sustainability BPR Awards announced today come from across Europe; in the UK, France, the Netherlands, Italy and Belgium, showing that listed firms are striving to improve their sustainability game regardless of where they are located.”

JLL’s Upstream Sustainability team assessed 86 listed European real estate companies’ compliance with the EPRA sBPR to determine the Gold Award winners. These were:

British Land Company, Beni Stabili, Citycon, Cofinimmo, Derwent London, Eurocommercial, Foncière des Régions, Gecina, Grainger, Great Portland Estates, Intu Properties, Klepierre, Land Securities Group, SEGRO, Unibail-Rodamco and Workspace Group. A further four companies received silver and six bronze awards.

Hans Op't Veld, Head of Listed Real Estate at Dutch pension investment manager, PGGM, an EPRA sBPR sponsor, said: “PGGM is one of the world’s largest investors in listed real estate companies and we have a fiduciary responsibility to ensure that the firms in which we invest aim to achieve the highest standards of sustainability practice. Therefore we welcome the role that EPRA and these awards play in raising performance and market awareness with regard to this extremely important issue and we encourage all those companies who are behind in disclosing their environmental impact to join the majority in doing so.”

This year’s EPRA conference also saw the launch of updated sBPR guidelines, which include seven new sustainability performance measures, three new overarching recommendations, and provides further clarity around the existing sustainability requirements. The 2015 EPRA sBPR awards will be based on compliance with the new guidelines.

Olivier Elamine, CEO at alstria office REIT & Chairman of the EPRA Sustainability Committee said: “Public disclosure of data is a fundamental component of a sustainable approach to real estate. EPRA leads the way in bringing greater consistency and clarity to companies' disclosure around their environmental performance through its sBPR. This is clearly reflected in both this year’s sBPR Awards with 26 companies now achieving an award and in the GRESB survey, where the European listed sector outperformed both the European non-listed and North American/Asian listed sectors.”