People moving less and using digital communication tools creates different challenges for real estate investors.

“In many countries, the combination of the explosion in ecommerce together with the pandemic and its impact on offices and retail is prompting a wide-ranging and difficult rethink about what the purpose of town and city centres will be in the future,” the Financial Times noted in its Crisis in Retail article.

It seems the purpose will be to have fewer offices and shops. The JPI Urban Europe online conference in November moderated by Global Corporate Venturing talked about three main themes to transition to a sustainable future: positive energy districts and neighbourhoods, the 15-minute city and downsizing district doughnuts.

If rents could be lower in future then there will be greater focus on lowering costs through energy efficiency and improved logistics of moving people and goods (see last week’s subsector review on the last-mile delivery).

A powerful syndicate of corporate limited partners are supporting venture capital firms, such as Fifth Wall, which hired last month Greg Smithies from car maker BMW to develop its climate tech dealmaking.

The sector is affected by factors outside of its control. People moving less and using digital communication tools creates different challenges for real estate investors, certainly those who built businesses around community working platforms, such as WeWork.

Tomorrow’s transport and batteries and data analytics pitch sessions hosted by GCV Connect powered by Proseeder’s platform comes with other presentations from SETsquared, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the University of California as noted by Global University Venturing.