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A Message from Engel & Völkers Global CEO



For most of us, 2020 was probably the most out-of-the-ordinary year we have ever experienced. The COVID-19 pandemic literally turned our whole world upside down. It was not just the economy that sometimes felt the severe impact. Each and every one of us has also been affected in our own individual ways. And even now, day-to-day life in many countries is still very different to what we are used to. At this point in time it is impossible to predict how the pandemic will proceed from here and what the economic impact will be. That said, the development of the vaccine gives us cause for hope and a reason to look ahead with greater optimism in 2021. Our performance figures for the past twelve months are also cause for enormous optimism. Engel & Völkers is more successful than ever: despite the coronavirus, we have once again succeeded in breaking last year’s annual production record. We generated a total of 937 million euros ($1.139 billion USD) in Group commission revenues and 910 million euros ($1.115 billion USD) in net commission revenues. This marks a 14% increase in reference to the brand commission production, which is simply incredible. On behalf of the entire Management Board, the Supervisory Board and shareholders, I would like to thank you for your unwavering commitment and hard work under these completely new circumstances. Without you, the 13,500+ people that make up the E&V network, Engel & Völkers would not have been able to master this unexpected situation with such a resounding outcome. So thank you very much for your outstanding achievements and loyalty. Development of the Property Market After an initial period of shock back in the spring when some submarkets came to a standstill, and viewings and notary appointments were made virtually impossible for many of our shops and offices, the property market as a whole recovered relatively quickly. In fact, compared to the same period in 2019, we brokered 60% more properties in the price bracket ranging from two to five million euros. Stability was also especially evident in the top segment upwards of five million euros, where we even managed to double our revenues over the previous year! In response to the pandemic, those who can afford it are choosing to invest in even larger homes, preferably surrounded by nature or the countryside, and well equipped for a wider range of needs. The home is increasingly becoming the focus of everyday life. It is where family time, leisure time, home schooling and remote working all converge and take place. Prospective buyers are more likely now to compromise on location provided it means they get more space and comfort in return. We have seen an overall rise in the quality of client enquiries too. Any owner taking the decision to open their home up to real estate advisors and prospective buyers during the pandemic really does have a serious interest in selling. And anyone viewing a property as a prospective buyer has a genuine interest in renting or buying. We have found that clients often do their own extensive research online before deciding to view a particular property in person. This client behavior has played in our favor. Independently of the coronavirus crisis, Engel & Völkers has been investing heavily in the development of digital tools and IT products for many years already. Our locations around the world have now reaped the benefits from this strategy. With the help of virtual viewings, for example, our advisors have been able to push deals further towards closure by digital means. The process of digitalization has played a significant role in making us even stronger. A high level of activity and increased productivity among real estate advisors and consultants has also contributed to our renewed growth. All of this has meant we have been able to continue positioning the Engel & Völkers brand effectively and pursuing a path of strong expansion. Planning went ahead in 2020 for 85 new shops and commercial offices, some of which have already been opened. This marks an even greater number than in any previous year. Engel & Völkers Around the Globe There seems to be no stopping Engel & Völkers Americas, and the United States and Canada in particular. 2020 was another record year in this market. Major cities like Atlanta are booming. More and more people are flocking to regions like Vancouver Island, as well as to well-known ski destinations and rural areas. Even in New York City, a market that has sadly been hit very hard by the pandemic, our business operations have remained steady. Demand in surrounding regions has risen so sharply that there are not nearly enough homes on the market to meet the level of interest. With $443 million (USD) in commission revenues and more than 32,000 closings in 2020, E&V Americas is one of the biggest contributors to the overall financial result of the Engel & Völkers Group. It now counts over 250 shops and more than 4,500 advisors among its ranks, and has achieved an incredible 38% year-over-year growth. Engel & Völkers is the only European real estate company that has managed to successfully establish itself in the North American market and become one of the major players there. This is thanks to Anth