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Asset Manager at Swiss Prime Site Immobilien

The mix of financial work, real estate and personal interaction with different stakeholders makes the role of Asset Manager a highly varied one. Phailin Chotirat gives us an insight into his work.

Thank you for giving us an insight into your day-to-day work.
Phailin Chotirat: It’s my pleasure! But I can’t tell you what a standard working day looks like, because every day is slightly different. That’s what makes my job so exciting – that and the fact that I’m often out visiting our properties, not just sitting at a desk all day.

Tell us a little bit about your main responsibilities.
The aim of my role is to develop and implement property strategies to increase the value and performance of our real estate. In concrete terms, this means ensuring the long-term development of our properties and their position on the market through forward-looking investments, an attractive mix of tenants, or conversion projects.

What exactly do you mean by an attractive mix of tenants?
Our portfolio is mainly made up of commercial properties. When it comes to an office complex like Opus in Zug, for example – which is one of the sites I’m in charge of – the aim is not simply to find another tenant and fill the vacancy as quickly as possible when a tenant moves out. Rather, it’s about working out what kind of tenant will add value to the site and make it more attractive, both for existing customers and for the neighbourhood as a whole. In the case of Opus, we try and get tenants like dentists and supermarkets to take over spaces that become vacant, as they represent added value for the whole site. The same principle also applies to other types of property, such as shopping centres.

Are there situations where vacancies have their advantages?
A vacancy is always a good opportunity to carry out renovations or refurbishments or to adapt the space for a different purpose. In doing so, we always have the property strategy in mind, along with our aim to develop the real estate in a way that is attractive in the long term.

I value our corporate culture, which is based on respect and innovation, and the responsibility I have.

Phailin Chotirat, Asset Manager Swiss Prime Site Immobilien

How do you position your real estate on the market?
We use active marketing. This can be through personal contacts, through my network or as part of a marketing strategy. As an Asset Manager, I develop our marketing activities together with our partners and agencies. I direct the agency and can give my creativity free rein. The fact that I know exactly what our customers need is a huge advantage.

What kind of areas bring you into contact with your colleagues?
When it comes to controlling and reporting processes and the financial valuation of a property, I work mainly with our finance and controlling department. I also support the acquisition and sales team when it comes to assessing properties as part of the acquisition process. I have close contact with the market and our customers in my day-to-day work, which gives me a good idea of the marketability and attractiveness of our properties. The same applies to the development or conversion of properties, which involves us working on ideas with colleagues from the development and construction team.

You’ve talked about working with colleagues within Swiss Prime Site. Do you work with associates outside of the company, too?
We direct external managers, marketers and fiduciaries and ensure that the relevant reports are correct for a given property. We also monitor compliance with the defined budget when it comes to building modifications.

What qualities does an Asset Manager need to have?
They need to be passionate about real estate, have a creative approach to potential uses for properties and a solid business understanding when it comes to key real estate figures. An entrepreneurial mindset and a professional manner are also key, as Asset Managers are in dialogue with a wide range of different stakeholders.

How would you sum up your job as an Asset Manager at Swiss Prime Site?
The mix of financial work, real estate and personal interaction with different stakeholders brings a lot of variety to my role. The fact that I work closely with other departments means I’m also learning new things all the time. I value our corporate culture, which is based on respect and innovation, and the responsibility I have when it comes to managing major assets.

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