UBM Development creates real estate for Europe’s top cities. The strategic focus is on green building and smart office in major European metropolitan areas like Vienna, Berlin, Munich or Prague. With over 145 years of history, UBM is a one-stop provider for the entire development value chain from initial planning all the way to marketing. The company’s shares are listed in the Prime Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange, the segment with the highest transparency requirements.
A syndicate comprising the industrialists Ortner and Strauss holds an investment of roughly 39% as the core shareholder. The Executive Committee, an expert board of 20 UBM managers, has invested €5m in UBM shares.
The headquarters of UBM Development AG are located in Vienna. Together with its subsidiaries, the company has also established an efficient network in Central Europe. Strong local integration and wide-ranging market expertise support the timely identification and utilisation of market opportunities which, in turn, protect the future pipeline. UBM’s interdisciplinary team develops ideas for new projects and innovative usage concepts, and also brings wide-ranging interests and users together. We offer a complete range of services required for this integrated approach from a single hand: market analysis, project development, planning and project management, financing, rental and asset management. Specialists with many years of professional experience accompany these processes from the initial project idea up to the transfer to tenants or the final investor. With this know-how, we cover all phases of the real estate value chain internally.
In addition to real estate development, UBM is also active as a hotel lessee. The subsidiary UBM hotels Management GmbH was founded in 2016 to bundle the operational know-how for hotel management and to combine all UBM hotel leasing operations.
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At UBM, we stand by our strategic orientation and concentrate on our fundamental core business – real estate development. In addition to a clear focus on top cities and three asset classes, UBM always keeps and eye on the project portfolio’s risk and performance profile in order to deliver sustainable and continuous earnings.
Distinct accents create a profile
UBM focuses on major European metropolitan areas like Vienna, Berlin, Munich and Prague. Germany and Austria and here the top cities each represent around 40% of our investments, while other markets make up a share of roughly 20%. The focus on three asset classes – Hotel, Residential and Office – will also continue. We develop entire urban quarters and extraordinary properties at prime locations. From planning to marketing, UBM offers a full range of services from a single hand.
Strict risk minimisation
From a strategic standpoint , risk minimisation forms the focal point of business activities. This objective is met in several dimensions. UBM works to create early transaction security with forward sales. At the same time, an “asset-light” strategy is pursued through joint ventures. This approach allows for a higher number of transactions and also improves the portfolio diversification.
Group-wide standardised processes
From an operational standpoint, process standardisation and an institutionalised 360° principle are designed to significantly minimise risk. In more concrete terms: All core an support processes were reviewed within the context of the “Next level” efficiency improvement programme based on defined “quality gates” and standardised across the entire Group.
Continuation of financial strategy
The focus on a stable balance sheet structure also remains intact. Four key elements represent the main points here: an increase in equity, a short balance sheet, control over net debt and the smoothing of the repayment structure. Although substantial progress has been made in the past, continuous improvement in this area will remain a key priority.
Dividend policy with continuity
The dividend is based on continuity and reflects UBM’s current and future earning power. Based on the record results produced in 2019 but also in view of the upcoming market challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, we plan to recommend the distribution of a stable dividend of € 2.20 per share to the Annual General Meeting.
Competent actions are visible in the sustainable, high quality of all our services. These actions are based on UBM’s history in the construction industry, on our many decades of experience as a developer and on the proficiency of our employees in all technical areas. But we are not only experts in technical engineering, we are also specialists for financial engineering. UBM is more widely diversified than many of its competitors. All types of technical and design issues are in the best of hands with our highly qualified construction engineers, architects, interior designers and facility technicians. The acquisition and sale of properties as well as hotel operations are also managed by UBM’s proven experts. In every phase of our projects, we identify the most important aspects and focus on efficient solutions. We encourage entrepreneurial thinking and independent actions through short decision paths and flat hierarchies. That creates a working climate where everyone feels involved, empowered – and inspired to take action.
Consequent actions are a further conerstone of our self-image. We stand for reliability with handshake-quality. From confidential initial discussions to the first draft and turnkey transfer on time and in budget, every detail gets our full attention. We handle subsequent special requests with exactly the same commitment as an entire project and are pleased when we can exceed our customer’s expectations. Our claim for every project also includes equal treatment for the interest of UBM’s stakeholders and the demands of the market. This is seldom easy but we see it as an obligation for UBM.
Another sign of consequence: Through our commitment and determination, we have grown to become the largest hotel developer in Europe. The share of residential projects is just as large at roughly 40% of our portfolio. In other words, we have consequently placed UBM on a broad foundation tha is also extremely stable. Because a stron balance sheet and sufficient liquidity are important. We address risks carefully in order to also remain a reliable partner for our employees, customers, business associates and other stakeholders in the future.
Transparent or in other words, understandable and predictable actions are not viewed as an annoying obligation, but as an opportunity. UBM’s listing in the prime market of the Vienna Stock Exchange gives us exact, up-to date feedback on our performance. Banks, institutional investors and our project partners are not faced with a black box when they turn to UBM. Through our investor relations activities and our increased media presence, we proactively transport a clear and diverse picture of our company. Our stakeholders and investors can follow UBM’s development, draw logical conclusions and take well-founded decisions.
In the end, this high degree of transparency also pays off for us. It is an essential criterion for our good conditions on the capital market and the substancial confidence of investors in UBM. For example: A bond we have issued in November 2019 with a coupon of 2.75% was oversubscribed in only one and a half hours, and the maximum volume of €120m was broadly placed. This type of favourable refinancing is a major competitive advantage.
Why are we moving ESG (“E“ for Environment, ”S“ for Social and “G“ for Governance) into the spotlight? Because it is an integral part of our green. smart. and more. strategy. Here, the pandemic significantly increased the pace of change. Sustainability (green), intelligent buildings (smart) and added value (more) were, of course, important issues for us in the past. But now, we are making them the focal point of our actions. This starts with the acquisition, leads to the question of whether a project can be realised with wood construction and ends with the building’s CO2 footprint over its entire life cycle. In other words: ESG defines UBM’s entire value chain.
The Executive Committee, as an expanded management body, is responsible for UBM as a corporate group. It consists of 20 members: the three members of the Management Board and 17 managers from the core markets and divisions. This management body meets roughly every six weeks to coordinate priorities and exchange information on current developments. The Executive Committee has invested approximately €5m in UBM shares, and the top managers participate at 5% in a future increase in the value of the share through share options.
Thomas G. Winkler, CEO
Thomas G. Winkler was born in Salzburg, Austria, in 1963. He completed his law degree at Salzburg University, Austria, in 1985, and received a Master of Laws (LL.M.) from the University of Cape Town, South Africa, in 1987. He started his professional career at Erste Bank AG (formerly Girozentrale) and, after various functions with Maculan Holding AG and Magna (Europe) Holding AG, he joined Deutsche Telekom AG in Bonn as Head of Investor Relations in 1998. In 2001 he was appointed to the Executive Board of T-Mobile International AG & Co. KG, where he was responsible for finance. After further assignments, among others as CFO of Lenzing AG and activities on the Supervisory Board of ÖIAG and Bashneft JSOC, Russia, Mr. Winkler was appointed Chairman of the Management Board of UBM Development AG as of 1 June 2016. As CEO, he is responsible for Strategy, Investor Relations & Communications, Transactions & Market Research, Legal & Compliance, Human Resources, and Mergers & Acquisitions.
Martin Löcker, COO
Martin Löcker was born in Leoben, Austria, in 1976. He graduated in industrial engineering and construction from the Technical University in Graz, Austria, in 2000 and completed postgraduate work in real estate economics at the European Business School in Munich, Germany, in 2005. He joined the PORR Group and its subsidiary UBM AG in 2001, where he was responsible for projects in Austria, France and Germany. He has also held various management positions at UBM AG and its subsidiary Münchner Grund since 2007 and has been a member of the Management Board since 1 March 2009. Martin Löcker is responsible for Project Acquisition Controlling, Operational Project Controlling, Business Development Austria, Technical Competences, Green Building, CSR & Work Safety, Quality Management & Integrated Management Systems.
Patric Thate, CFO
Patric Thate was born in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, in 1973. After completing studies in economics at Wuppertal and Nottingham Universities, he started his career at Deutsche Telekom in Bonn during 1999, where he held various management positions in finance until the end of 2010. He then served as Vice President Global Finance at Lenzing AG, Austria, until 2015, with responsibility for the entire finance division. Mr. Thate also played a key role in major international capital market transactions, including the Re-IPO of Lenzing AG. In his most recent position, Patric Thate was Head of Finance and a member of the Executive Committee of UBM Development AG. He was appointed CFO of UBM on 1 July 2017 and is responsible for Financial Controlling & Reporting, Accounting & Consolidation, Treasury, Tax, IT and Insurance.
UBM was founded on 3 March 1873 as Union-Baumaterialien-Gesellschaft. The company is active in the acquisition and operation of brick factories and quarries. UBM‘s initial public offering takes place on 10 April 1873. In spite of the worldwide economic crisis, the company focuses on expansion in the 1880s and acquires numerous brick factories to become the second largest brick producer in the Austrian monarchy.
At the beginning of 20th Century, UBM holds a 30% investment in the Vienna brick cartel. PORR acquires shares in Union-Baumaterialien-Gesellschaft. High inflation in the early 1920s leads to the expansion of the business model: together with Allgemeine Österreichische Baugesellschaft, a number of residential construction companies are founded in 1921.
In connection with a joint project on the Paris real estate market, UBM and PORR form a consortium at the end of the 1920s. UBM masters the global economic crisis due to its early focus on real estate.
UBM has since left the original business area of Union-Baumaterialien-Gesellschaft far behind and established a new position. In the 1950s, the company increases its focus on project development with a concentration on Austria and Vienna.
After the fall of the Iron Curtain, UBM enters the markets in the Czech Republic and Poland. Several years later UBM is also active on projects in Germany, France and the Netherlands. In 2000, Klaus Ortner purchases his first UBM shares. The entry of the Strauss Group leads to the creation of a syndicate by the industrialists Ortner and Strauss in 2014. The syndicate purchases the majority interest in PORR and separates the construction and real estate activities. The development companies are merged. A capital increase in spring 2015 results in free float of over 60%. PORR’s stake fell below 1% and no longer exists today.
Thomas G. Winkler is appointed CEO/CFO in 2016. The UBM share moves into the prime market segment of the Vienna Stock Exchange. One year later, the smaller Management Board is reorganised according to functional responsibilities – with Thomas G. Winkler as CEO, Martin Löcker as COO and Patric Thate as CFO. In 2018, UBM celebrates its 145th anniversary as a company and completes a rebranding – all subsidiaries now appear under a common brand: UBM Development auf.