Source: eKapija | Thursday, 16.04.2015.| 11:45
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Zemun Park opens May 28th - First retail park in Belgrade to get movie theater and additional 2,500 square meters of commercial space by year's end (PHOTO)

The first retail park in Belgrade - Zemun Park, will be opened May 28th, the Mivne Group from Israel announced today. Over 98% of outlets have already got their tenants, and 40 new stores are expected to open in Zemun after the first phase of works. The new "shopping temple" is situated in the vicinity of Belgrade-Novi Sad highway, near the Metro Cash&Carry store, and it currently occupies a surface area of 16,000 square meters. In the construction of Zemun Park, the Mivne Group has so far invested EUR 25 million, and this investor has already announced some new investments.

This is the first investment of the Israeli company in the real estate industry in Serbia, but it is not the first ever. Namely, the Fishman Group, part of which is the Mivne Group, operates in Serbia through Home Centar stores, and this particular brand will be one of the anchors in Zemun Park. There will also be a large UniverExport store and a Do-It-Yourself depot, and the new retail park will also boast the largest playhouse for children in the country.

- We believe in the development of retail business in Serbia, and we've noticed a large demand for quality office space from local and international trade companies while developing this particular project. The concept of retail parks is more adaptable to the market and economic environment in Serbia given that the monthly rent is much lower than in shopping malls, and so are the costs of maintenance. Besides, retail parks are also more available to buyers due to easier access and a bigger number of parking places - said Nir Makdasi, regional manager of the Mivne Group.

According to Makdasi, among the tenants of Zemun Park are also sports shops, furniture and electrical appliances stores, and the idea is to make it possible for various sports, cultural and music events to be organized within the first retail park in Belgrade, in a fun park on about 23,000 square meters.

Zemun Park will also feature a mini shopping center for tenants and local companies that cannot afford large stores of 1,000-2,000 square meters which are quite common for retail parks.

Once completely finished, Zemun Park will occupy a total of 30,000 square meters. The parcel next to the Novi Sad highway covers an area of about 77,000 square meters. It is also stressed that the future shopping center will have in excess of 800 parking places.

Misa Markovic, manager of Zemun park, and Nie Makdasi, regional manager of the Mivne Group, at the presentation of the first retail park in Belgrade
Movie theaters and new stores

Immediately after the opening of retail park in late May, the investor will commence work on its expansion. By the year's end, Zemun Park should get bigger for additional 5,000 square meters of space, half of which will be occupied by a large cineplex and the other half by new stores. As Makasi announced, the second phase of works will be completely finished by the end of 2016, when international retail chains are expected to enter the market of Serbia.

Misa Markovic, manager of the future shopping center, told eKapija that the value of the second phase of works would depend on precise construction and economic estimates, adding it would not be significantly smaller than the value of the first phase.

- Few million euros will be invested in the construction of cineplex and new commercial space alone over a period of about 6 to 7 months. The opening of this shopping center in less than 45 days will provide 300 people with jobs, and we expect another 300 workers to be hired in the second phase. Also, few hundred construction workers will be employed indirectly in both phases of works– said Markovic.

It is expected that over 400,000 citizens of the capital city will gravitate towards the new shopping center in Belgrade. However, Zemun Park will be closest to the shoppers from Zemun, New Belgrade, Zemun Polje, Batajnica, Altina and Ugrinovci, as well as those from the other side of the river - Borca, Ovca and Krnjaca, thanks to the Pupin Bridge.

Interest expressed in other cities as well

When asked by eKapija if the Mivne Group was considering building a retail park in some other town in Serbia as well, Markovic said they had definitely given that a thought.

- When we are entering a market, we come with the intention to stay for a long time. We first need to develop our business in Belgrade and open the retail park in Zemun in the right way.

The Mivne Group is a leading Israely real estate group managing over 4 million square meters of space across the world. It is a subsidiary of the Fishman Group, made up of prestigious companies Industrial Buildings Corporation, Jerusalem Economy, and Darban.

It operates in Serbia through Jelmil, which is 50% owned by Industrial Buildings Corporation (IBC) and 50% are in the possession of Jerusalem Economy Corporation (JEC).

Retail parks

Instead of indoor shopping centers with artificial lighting and air conditioning systems, retail parks give people an opportunity to go shopping outdoors and are mainly positioned outside the central city zones because they are bigger in size.

Ivana Bezarevic

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