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Italians take center stage at MIPIM Real Estate fair with nearly 345 participating firms

by Evelina Marchesini

Italy aims to make a good impression at the MIPIM, that opens Tuesday, March 15, at the Palais des Festivals in Cannes, and runs though Friday, March 18. The country opted for a wide and well-organized participation, finally supported by government institutions.

In four days of meetings, debates, conferences and negotiations, participants (all holding senior roles in real estate and investment firms around the world) will lay the foundation for this year’s biggest development projects, and will present to their peers in the sector the biggest and most ambitious real estate projects planned globally.

The fair hosts 2,245 exhibitors and covers 19,000 square meters of exhibition area. About 4,800 investors were confirmed. An army of real estate professionals will descend on Cannes: 21,400 representatives from 89 countries have already been registered.

Italy’s real estate sector shows a solid presence at the MIPIM. First of all, attendance is steadily rising.

“The figures show a significant increase from last year,”said a spokesperson for Reed Midem, the company that organizes the fair. “That said, we think that this is part of a growth trend due to an increased presence of the whole Italian industry, after last year’s successful experience of the Italian pavilion. This has led to an expansion of the pavilion itself (that almost doubled in size and increased the number of its partners, also beginning to allow private partners) and has hastened a decision from the companies involved (also given the important validation from the attending authorities).”

Estimates point to a strong growth for the Italian delegation, around 10-15% from last year.

“The Italian participation at the MIPIM 2016 testifies to the Italian companies’ efforts to improve cooperation, and to present themselves in a coordinated way to the international operators attending the MIPIM,” said MIPIM director Filippo Rean.

Last year, 703 Italian representatives attended the fair, making Italy the sixth country in order of attendance, while this year at least 800 participants are expected.

Three hundred and seven Italian companies were registered last year, and 345 are expected this year (a 15% increase). In 2015, there were 156 exhibitors, making Italy the fourth country for number of exhibitors, while as of today 160 exhibitors are confirmed, and the number is likely to increase. Wednesday, March 16 is “Italian Day” par excellence at MIPIM.

Like every year, the Palais des Festivals will host the country’s official conference. This year’s topic will be “Italian real estate: striving for excellence” starting from Milan’s forward momentum, where urban regeneration and new strategies have laid the foundation for a global quality increase and for the creation of a real investment hub. The Italian government has taken up the challenge and public authorities team up with the sector’s key players, with the Cassa Depositi e prestiti playing a new role.

Many institutional guests will attend the “Italian day.” The official afternoon program includes ICE - Italian trade agency President Riccardo Maria Monti; Italian Cabinet Undersecretary Ivan Scalfarotto; Marco Simoni, adviser to Prime Minister Matteo Renzi; and Roberto Reggi, director general of the state property agency Agenzia del Demanio.