International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, is extending a EUR 50 million long-term loan to Grivalia Properties, a leading real estate investment company, to bolster Greece’s crucial commercial property sector and support energy efficiency.
IFC announced its investment will help Grivalia make significant renovations and energy efficiency improvements to its commercial properties across Greece. The company will be the first in the country to seek IFC’s Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (EDGE) certification.
IFC’s financing package is designed to support the commercial property sector, which accounts for approximately six percent of the country’s GDP. During Greece’s recession, the sector has been hampered by falling rents, decreasing property values, and receding investor confidence.
“The investment will help to increase investor confidence in the commercial real estate sector. Modern and energy efficient infrastructure will also help reduce energy costs and make businesses more competitive,” said Tomasz Telma, IFC Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia.
“We are honored to be partnering up with one of the most prestigious international financing institutions active in Greece,” said George Chryssikos, Grivalia’s CEO.
Grivalia currently owns and operates almost 90 commercial properties, mostly in Greece, rented by companies such as banks, retailers, and manufacturers. IFC, partnering with Grivalia, will introduce EDGE green building standards to Greece. The buildings with EDGE certification need to consume 20 percent less energy than the local benchmark. Such improvements will not only help Greece to work on achieving its climate change targets, but also enhance the overall competitiveness of the private sector companies by reducing energy consumption and costs.
Greece, as a developed economy, has graduated from the World Bank Group’s standard lending programs. However, in 2015, at the request of the Greek government, IFC’s Board of Governors endorsed IFC’s engagement in Greece. IFC continues to evaluate investment opportunities in financial services, infrastructure development, and other sectors. Its aim is to restore confidence for investors, support private-sector-led growth, help the country attract foreign investment, and promote domestic investments. Since IFC’s re-engagement, it has invested USD 280 million in seven projects.