This, according to Mr Krause, is because commodities are at the heart of Macquarie's business, making it very well placed to help investors benefit from the opportunities that market presents. “The breadth of our expertise in commodity markets and the reach of our global platform, has allowed us to manage the increased volatility and volume of trades that has been driven by the COVID-19 pandemic more effectively than most."
Another market condition driven by the pandemic is the exponential growth in flexible and remote working, which is accelerating trends in Germany's real estate sector. Macquarie Asset Management is supporting this growing number of property market investors through its dedicated real estate platform.
Florian Winkle, managing director and Co-head of Macquarie Asset Management's real estate team in Europe suggests: “There’s increasing interest among international and domestic investors in residential developments and office buildings suited to the future of work. This new influx of overseas investors like the fact that Germany has a number of 'secondary cities.' Unlike France and the UK, which have one or two mega-cities, our federal structure means that there are a number of economically successful centres increasing the demand for residential and commercial real estate."
However, one of the most interesting developments for Macquarie's real estate platform has been in the logistics sector, as Mr Winkle explains: "Another unexpected consequence of the pandemic, is that firms are increasingly turning to suppliers that are closer to them and there’s less reliance on just-in-time delivery systems. These increased volumes in inventory have to be stored somewhere locally, and we are seeing great interest and opportunity in this space. As retail also moves online, modern logistics and fulfilment centres are in high demand.”
Venture Capital (VC) is another sector that has grown impressively in Germany over recent years and is now attracting the attention of investors from around the world. “When we first became involved in the German VC space, the market was worth about €400 million, and today it is closer to €4.5 billion. We’re seeing more and more successful IPOs, and a growing number of investors exiting from so called 'unicorns' start-ups," explains Elmar Broscheit, division director of Macquarie Capital's VC group.
Mr Broscheit points to Rocket Internet, the German tech incubator which has spawned a large number of successful tech start-ups. “We’re seeing this market evolving too – with more interest in firms offering business to business (b2b) services, rather than those purely aimed at the consumer market. Valuations based on revenue multiples have been increasing across the board and many start-up companies are benefitting from the move to having more people working from home - as this can reduce costs. This is also boosting interest in cyber companies.”
German and international investors - including an increasing number from the Asia Pacific region - come to Macquarie because of its flexible capital offering and its deep sector expertise, according to Mr Broscheit. “They also appreciate our networking capabilities. Our experience and our contacts mean that we can help to facilitate introductions in what is an increasingly exciting and competitive market.”
Macquarie has invested in and from Germany for more than three decades and today has over 170 staff on the ground. With sector specialists that not only speak the local language but thoroughly understand the local culture, Macquarie is well positioned to help clients navigate Germany's unique investment landscape.