Agustin Levy
Executive President of Levy Holding
View from the Top

Re-Standardizing the Final Product

Thu, 11/01/2018 - 11:14

Q: What areas of opportunity has the company identified within the market that it would like to penetrate?
A: We started out as a real estate marketer, which taught us valuable lessons in how, where and why to sell. The next step was to gather resources through specialized crowdfunding. Our capital raising grew to a point where we needed more properties, leading us to venture into real estate development. In this niche, we found that product innovation was lagging and so our goal was to offer a different asset. We believe we are disrupting and re-standardizing the final product in real estate. For example, over a certain area, our clients can choose if they want a loft or a two-bedroom apartment. Also, we integrate sustainability, using solar panels or other technologies to make our buildings eco-friendly and cost-efficient. Our products can create average savings of 40-45 percent, so instead of paying MX$1,000 for maintenance, our clients will pay around MX$450 since we use the monthly rental income from our units to subsidize the monthly maintenance cost.
We also want to grow in the hospitality market and our guidance for the next two years is to have 450 rooms, mainly in the 4-star sector and boutique hotels. Around half of these rooms will be for senior living and we expect to be the pioneers in this niche in Jalisco. AMAR Consulting is an expert on senior living in Mexico and we are seeking to collaborate with the firm by hiring it as our suppliers and exploring a possible alliance in the future. As Chapala has the biggest foreign community in the country, we believe it is a great market for senior living as this population is expected to expand quickly.
Q: What is the company’s strategy for organic growth and how do you finance expansion?
A: We were able to reach our targets due to our company pillars of transparency and autonomy. We strive to have the best qualified team, with 15 shareholders at the moment. I think this is the secret to being a diversified business. We will keep innovating, as this is the foundation for our company’s growth. We use targeted strategies to provide better coverage to some neglected niches in the country, such as B+ offices and mixed-use developments with 50 apartments and commercial premises. We are also starting to look for bigger land areas to develop bigger projects, with the intention of doubling our uptake in the next 12 months. We are considering a 1,000-apartment project in Playa del Carmen. But we do not want to lose our segmentation within projects, so our developments remain exclusive to our clients.
Regarding the financial aspect, we have used crowdfunding to raise capital and gathered around MX$300 million from word of mouth. But while crowdfunding is a successful way to access financing, we also want to list on the stock exchange. Our goal is to launch our first CKD in no more than two years for MX$3.5-5 billion.
Q: How do you differentiate from your competitors and ensure you are adding the most value to the market?
A: We are changing the idea of how to build and develop real estate, staring with Guadalajara and the Riviera Maya. In four years, we have raised more than MX$3 billion in assets, with exponential growth in the last two years, mainly due to our differentiated product. Regardless of the price, our projects keep selling because nobody else offers a similar product.