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Office Insider FEBRUARY 2018


Is blockchain already in the commercial real estate sector?


P.3 Feature Introducing blockchain, cryptocurrencies, and the real estate space P.6 Editor's Interview Lee Garden Three - 33 Hysan Ave, Causeway Bay P.8

Colliers News

P.9 Meet Wang Cheung, a broker and a mother P.11 Featured Properties

Office Insider is a monthly magazine featuring the latest in the office property market. Everything from new trends, to popular monthly listings, and Colliers’ most recent projects and news.



FIONA NGAN General Manager Head of Office Services Tel +852 2822 0722

KATE HEALY-SMITH Associate Director Marketing & Communications Licence No: E-197789

FRANCISCO SKOVMAND Content Manager Marketing & Communications VALERIE TSO Business Acceleration Manager Office Services

Follow us on: This document has been prepared by Colliers International for advertising and general information only. Colliers International makes no guarantees, representations or warranties of any kind, expressed or implied, regarding the information including, but not limited to, warranties of content, accuracy and reliability. Any interested party should undertake their own inquiries as to the accuracy of the information. Colliers International excludes unequivocally all inferred or implied terms, conditions and warranties arising out of this document and excludes all liability for loss and damages arising there from. This publication is the copyrighted property of Colliers International and/or its licensor(s). Š2017. All rights reserved.


Introducing blockchain, cryptocurrencies, and the real estate space

Blockchain technology is an online database or distributed ledger which records and

manages transactions and stores them in a network of ‘blocks’. It archives past and present transactions for every item kept in there, digital items such as identity and ownership documents, and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. The network is safeguarded by its encryption and transparency, and because it is stored across many blocks, that anyone has access to, the information is virtually incorruptible.

Consumers, companies, and whole industries are now looking at how this technology can be adopted, and corporate real estate (CRE) is one of these industries. It will take some time for CRE to fully adopt blockchain and the digital assets it brings with it, but when it does disruption will come in numerous ways: from purchasing, leasing, and lease management; to capital raising for real estate ventures through Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs); and property search and due diligence processes, and smart-decision making. Landlords, tenants, buyers, sellers, and brokers all have access to historical accounts of specific properties and CRE market data. Today, this data is recorded

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through internal or standalone CRM systems, websites, e-mails, etc. all which can be tampered with. Blockchain removes the risks of malicious interference, fraud, and cost cutting in the CRE market. Assuming confidentiality is cleared, blockchain would allow for each property to have a digital identity in the system and a factual record of all tenants that have leased or owned the property, transaction documents, maintenance records, and landlord information. Which would result in the facilitation and streamlining of any deal in the leasing and owning processes, including reducing the amount of paperwork and people involved.


Even though blockchain will take some time to spread across CRE, cryptocurrencies – a type of application build on the blockchain, are already making a mark. A cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency designed to work as a medium of exchange, it uses cryptography to secure and verify transactions as well as to control the creation of new units – a process called mining. Basically, cryptocurrencies are limited entries in a database that no one can change unless specific conditions are met, and its value is determined by the demand in the market.

Cryptocurrencies have given rise to ICOs, a new capital raising method used by start-ups to fund new projects, and in the case of CRE, to fund new real estate related ventures. A developer or owner offers investors some units of a new cryptocurrency or crypto-token in exchange for other cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, or a fiat currency. The cryptocurrency or tokens then serve two purposes:


act as shares or ownership rights in the company which can then be traded, and


used to access the company’s services. In the case of CRE, tokens can be used to purchase different services. Some notable examples are:

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Invest in CRE with REAL The REAL token, issued by Barcelonabased Real, raised USD11 million during their ICO in September 2017. By providing access to their crowdfunding platform they allow individuals to invest in CRE projects across the globe. The platform will operate like a typical crowdfunding site, except it will run on blockchain technology and accept Real tokens rather than fiat money.


Purchasing a home with PRO The PRO token issued by Propy provides access to the Propy platform, which has listings in cities like New York, San Francisco, Miami, and London, and a decentralized title registry running on blockchain. The firm raised USD15 million during its ICO in September 2017 and made headlines that month when an apartment was remotely purchased through Propy’s platform in Kiev for USD60,000 by a Ukrainian developer. Propy claims it is the first real estate transfer ever done entirely via blockchain. As part of the transaction, the title is automatically transferred by Propy.

Rent a co-working space with PBT The PBT token issued by the co-working firm Primalbase has one very specific use: access to Primalbase’s co-working spaces. The Dutch firm raised USD8 million when it opened its first space in Amsterdam, and it has plans to open spaces in Berlin, then London, New York and Singapore. The success of this project remains to be seen, with many questioning the requirements of a token to reserve a co-working space. Blockchain is slowly making way into the CRE space, for now, the main challenge is to get the various parties (landlords, sellers, tenants, brokers, etc.) to understand and agree to the technology. Additionally, the legality of both cryptocurrencies and ICOs is constantly being debated, and while the technology is popular, many do see the potential risks and downfalls that could come with it. For developers and owners privacy is primary concern, they don’t want their data being shared with users across the network, and the truth is that blockchain is fully traceable. Still, it is important to acknowledge one of the fundamental aspects of blockchain: its security. Due to its distributed and open nature, no single government, company, group, or person has control over the information stored there, which also reduces the risk of data loss and/or manipulation. With high levels of security and the opportunity to build applications on top of the technology, blockchain has vast potentials in CRE and across many other sectors. In the long run it will have a prominent place in property, but for now the rate of adoption remains unclear. By Philip Pang Senior Manager, Office Services Page 5 | Colliers International | Office Insider | February 2018

Editor's Interview

Lee Garden Three 1 Sunning Road, Causeway Bay

Fiona Ngan (Left) and Jessica Yip (Right)

In this month’s landlord interview, we have invited Jessica Yip, Director (Office & Residential) from Hysan, to talk about their brand-new development: Lee Garden Three. Conveniently located in the heart of Causeway Bay and surrounded by entertaining retail outlets, Lee Garden Three is the newest premium commercial building with a LEED Gold Award pre-certification A-Grade office space. It is also a BEAM Plus Provisional Platinum building.

What are Lee Garden Three’s visions and objectives?

What trends do you foresee in the green building movement?

We want to provide our tenants with better LEAP values and an efficient Grade-A office space, all to ensure they get better value for their money. Lee Garden Three is already a great alternative to Central; it has cosmopolitan retail outlets and restaurants, prestigious office spaces, and abundant parking options. It is a nice new addition to the Lee Gardens office portfolio.

With employee wellness becoming a priority for tenants, green buildings have become a major market differentiator. We believe that employee wellness and a sustainable community are becoming essential in term of recruitment and retention. At Hysan, we aim to create unique communities where people love to live, work and play, not just for the now but for years to come.

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Editor's Interview

What makes Lee Garden Three an office space where people would like to work in? Lee Garden Three offers various lifestyle options. The 15th floor hosts the Sky Garden, a covered outdoor garden with a variety of natural greenery and surrounded by a 100-meter jogging track. It is a place for tenants to find inspiration and rejuvenate their spirits. The building is also well connected, as it is well-served by various means of transportation and a variety of 24/7 amenities.

What kind of tenant mix would you like to attract? We would like our portfolio to consist of a diversified mix of well-known industry tenants from banking and finance, professional services, and telecommunications, media and technology. We are also interested in attracting co-working operators.

How does Lee Garden Three differentiate itself from the other major buildings in Causeway Bay, Central, and Island East areas? Lee Garden 3 is a mixed-use building with top green credentials and its office floors feature large plates of 17-18,000 sq.ft per floor, with column free layouts and an average 91% space efficiency. A specially built inter-floor staircase provides a sunlit space and a convenient way to foster communication between internal offices, creating a good environment for multiple floor users and business networking. The in-house carpark can fit up to 200 cars, and the car parks in the Lee Gardens area hold 900+ spaces. It is also the only office building with a covered front drop-off area in the district. Lee Gardens also provides a membership called “Lee Gardens Plus”, which offers a range of different activities and privileges to the tenants. We truly believe that our first-class office space and retail facilities truly stand out as some of the most dynamic in Hong Kong. It is an ideal location for people to work, shop, and play.

How will Lee Garden Three impact the Causeway Bay area – both in office and retail? We don’t see Lee Garden Three as a stand-alone office building. It is part of a community that is promoting better living through wellness and sustainability, as well as a cosmopolitan lifestyle. The building is presented as a response to the trends impacting today’s workforce – millennials. We believe that this younger workforce will love the location and the amenities in the building. In turn, they will help energize the area.

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Colliers News

Teambuilding: Taming a dragon Back in December, in a time not too long ago, the office services team conquered Dragon’s Back trail. This treacherous hike, a team building adventure in the likes of a fantastical saga, took our brave OS warriors through moments of arduous hardship and moments of blissful merriment, to reach a portentous high of intimate comradery.

Colliers CEO breakfast To kick-off 2018, Colliers hosted a CEO breakfast event. Participants included several industry heads, decision makers, and opinion leaders, all gathered together to discuss the latest market news. Key takeaways included: • Hong Kong’s investment market is looking strong. • New occupier sectors including finance, technology, and co-working spaces will increase rents across Asia. • Seven driving motives behind selecting a new apartment: Rent, distance, community, location, green living, neighbourhood, and enjoyment. For more information you can click here.

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Meet our brokers


Wang Cheung, a broker and a mother

How would you describe your role at Colliers International? WC: I’m a senior associate director with the office

services team. I’ve always been grateful for the opportunity to work with both multinational and local companies from various industries on their office renewal, relocations, and acquisition projects. I work with them to determine their specific needs, and liaise closely with the office managers, financial controllers, CEOs and owners to understand their views and wants. I enjoy the vibrant environment and nature of the business, and work keeps me busy in a good way. Having spent seven years in the same function, I’ve built close relationships with my team, my clients, and my landlord counterparts – which brings a lot of pleasure to my work.

How did you get in to the industry? WC: I started as a graduate with JLL and during

that time I rotated through different roles, working in the sales, leasing, and international property teams. After spending some time as a landlord representative, I wanted a role with more exposure to the occupants and end users, one catering to corporate clients. At that time, Colliers’ Kowloon office services team was expanding and Fiona Ngan, Head of Office Services, offered me an opportunity to be a negotiator within her team. This was my beginnings in office leasing.

Wang Cheung joined Colliers International seven years ago. Starting as a graduate, she is a seasoned broker with over 10 years of experience, that fully understands the intricacies of the office property market.

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Meet our brokers

Attention to detail, kind-heartedness, and persistency lead to success. My tenacity and my willingness to keep learning and improving enhance my value.

What do you think has led to your success in this traditionally male dominated industry?

What is the biggest challenges of being a broker and a mom? How do you keep a work life balance?

WC: I would like to define ‘male dominated’ as the

WC: The greatest challenge is to fulfil one role

number of male brokers being significantly higher than the number of female brokers; and I would like to trust that this occurrence, to some extent, can be explained by the nature of an office leasing agent. It is physically demanding and requires frequent on-site and construction site visits; a tight work schedule, intense competition, and focused revenue targets also make it mentally very demanding. Women might tend to pick a job that is more stable in terms of working hours and income, especially when we have children at home. Although the job nature doesn’t seem very welcoming to women, some female characteristics such as attention to detail, kind-heartedness, and persistency can lead to success in this client focused industry. I do believe that my tenacity and my willingness to keep learning and improving has enhanced my value and competitiveness.

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without sacrificing on the other. As a new mom, I’m trying my best to satisfy my baby’s needs while maintaining a healthy working life. Clashes sometimes happen between the two, since I have more tasks to take care of in the same amount of time. But I am grateful to have an understanding and supportive team, boss, and family that allow me to find that balance. I’m still trying to identify the fine line between being a good mom and being a good co-worker. However, better planning, time management, and teamwork will certainly enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of my role and allow me to have more time with my baby.

WANG CHEUNG Senior Associate Director, Office Services Tel +852 2822 0757

Featured Properties

China Evergrande Centre 38 Gloucester Road

Sole Agency > Approx. area: 9,081 sq ft gross > Prestigious Grade A office building > Fully fitted > Available from 1 August 2017 > Attractive rental package > Full seaview

Close to Public Transport



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Featured Properties

Island East Prime Location in Quarry Bay

Sole Agency > Approx.12,151 sq ft Lettable > Prestigious Grade A Office Building > City View / Mountain View > Fully fitted & highly efficient floor plate > Attractive rental package > Availability: Negotiable


Close to MTR Station

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Featured Properties


30-34 Kwai Wing Road, Kwai Chung

Sole Agency > Approx. area: 25,600 sq ft gross > Quality revitalised building > 100 mm raised floor available > 2 floors of retail with around 30,000 sqf ft gross > 9 mins walk from Kwai Hing MTR station

Close to Public Transport

Raised Floor

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Featured Properties


100 Kwai Cheong Road, Kwai Chung

Sole Agency > Approx. 7,384 – 24,663 sq ft Gross approx > Quality building specifications > High end retail space on the first and second floor > 3 mins walk from Kwai Hing MTR station

Garden View / Open View

Close to MTR Station

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Featured Properties

The Hennessy 256 Hennessy Road, Wan Chai

> Approx. area 1,637 sq ft gross > Surrender Stock > A new and modern fitted office with very high ceilings, located in the heart of the Wan Chai district > 1-month advance notice > Estimated Effective Rent: $32.00-33.00/ sq ft gross Close to MTR Station

Close to Public Transport

Admiralty Centre Tower 2 18 Harcourt Road, Admiralty

> Approx. area 4,388 sq ft gross > Surrender Stock > A well-designed office with conference rooms and manager rooms, located right above the Admiralty MTR station and has open city view > 1-month advance notice > Estimated Effective Rent: $50/sq ft gross Close to MTR Station

Close to Public Transport

Garden View / Open View

Office Services - Hong Kong Page 15 | Colliers International | Office Insider | February 2018

852 2822 0668

Featured Properties

CDW Building 382-392, Castle Peak Road, Tsuen Wan

> Approx. area: 2,195 – 40,100 sq ft gross > Competitive rental package > Open view > Proximity to public transport & eating outlets > On top of shopping mall

Close to MTR Station

Close to Public Transport


Spectrum Tower 53 Hung To Road, Kwun Tong

> Approx. area: 7,707 – 7,928 sq ft gross (Sub-divisible) > Competitive rental package > Newly renovated common area > 5 mins walk to the Kwun Tong MTR station

Close to MTR Station

Close to Public Transport

Office Services - Kowloon Page 16 | Colliers International | Office Insider | February 2018

852 2822 0722

Colliers International Agency Limited Company Licence No: C-006069

Office Services - Hong Kong 5701 Central Plaza, 18 Harbour Road Wanchai, Hong Kong Tel: 852 2822 0668 Fax: 852 2107 6060 Email:

Office Services - Kowloon Unit 2309, 23/F BEA Tower, Millennium City 5 418 Kwun Tong Road, Kwun Tong, Kowloon Tel: 852 2822 0722 Fax: 852 2107 6062 Email:

Office Insider - February 2018  

This month’s Office Insider discusses technologies like blockchain and cryptocurrencies, and their role in the commercial real estate space.

Office Insider - February 2018  

This month’s Office Insider discusses technologies like blockchain and cryptocurrencies, and their role in the commercial real estate space.