By Michał Muc, managing director of Ceres Management Services in Central and Eastern Europe and Wojciech Zawierucha, operations director at Ceres
Ceres pole


  • Ceres Management Services is a new player on the open market of property management services in Poland and across the CEE and SEE regions
  • Currently the company manages commercial real estate with a total leasable area of 250,000m2.

Ceres Management Services is a new player on the open market of property management services in Poland, CEE and SEE. What does the company see as a market opportunity? We are currently witnessing numerous turbulences, and the level of competition in the management services market is high.

Michał Muc (MM): Ceres Management Services was established in 2015 to initially manage properties included in the portfolio of the international Revetas Capital fund. Currently, we manage commercial real estate with a total leasable area of 250,000m2 located in Poland, Bulgaria and Romania. We are also interested in the Hungarian and Czech markets, where until recently we also managed commercial real estate and soon, we will appear on these markets again. Ceres is therefore not a new entity on the market. The Ceres management team consists of several dozen high-class specialists who gained their experience in managerial positions in international companies such as DTZ, Savills or TriGranit. They managed core assets in this part of Europe, such as the Złote Tarasy shopping centre in Warsaw, commercial real estate portfolios for such as Valad, Commerz Real, Unibail Rodamco, Credit Suisse Asset Management or SEB Investment, as well as smaller office, warehouse or retail projects located in regional cities, such as regional centres or retail parks. The spectrum of our possibilities to build the value of real estate, confirmed by numerous successes, is wide. Based on our unique competences, we specialise in the repositioning, recommercialisation and leasing, redevelopment and extension of older properties from all sectors of the commercial real estate market. For many investors, this may be a good time to look for such older projects with great potential for value creation.

Wojciech Zawierucha (WZ): We currently manage, among others, the Bonarka for Business complex in Krakow with a leasable area of nearly 80,000m2; the logistics and office centre, Sofia Airport Center with a leasable area of over 46,000m2; Park Center Sofia shopping centre with a leasable area of over 21,000m2, Trinity One office building located in Warsaw which offers more than 19,000m2 or The Landmark, a high-class business park located in the centre of Bucharest, with over 22,000m2. Our teams were also coordinating a comprehensive redevelopment of the Radisson hotel located in the Romanian capital, and these are only selected projects. We are responsible for the full spectrum of services for real estate: from property management and project management, through coordination of services, commercialisation, relations with tenants, accounting, ESG advisory, and supervision over the finances of real estate and special purpose vehicles, to marketing communication and PR. We focus primarily on efficiency – maximising the benefits for owners with optimal use of budgets. Our extensive experience, supported by numerous successes, allows us to offer our clients services unparalleled on the market in an above-standard, wide range and at a very high level. We provide them for all property owners: both institutional investors, as well as entrepreneurs and private individuals.

So it can be said that Ceres Management Services is entering the market at a time when experience is at a premium, which is supposed to enable potential investors to maximise profits from emerging opportunities.

MM: To put it simply, this is how it can be put, although it is not so simple. To generate profits from an older property or located in a different country, you need not only experience but also excellent knowledge of current, local, and global economic, social, legal, and technological conditions. Certainly, the time is coming for entities with capital who, by purchasing older commercial projects, can reposition them on the market to create extremely attractive assets. However, it should be remembered that not every opportunity is in reality and a seemingly beneficial purchase of, for example, an older office building in the city centre may ultimately require such large outlays that it will be difficult to generate any profits from them, hence we often advise our clients already at the purchase stage by conducting comprehensive analyses assets from the commercial, technical or financial side.

WZ: Our primary goal is to optimize the functioning of real estate and carry out processes and implement procedures that guarantee the maximization of profit for all entities involved in the operation of facilities: from owners through tenants, customers to local communities.

So who is the real customer for Ceres, and who is, let’s say, the beneficiary?

MM: In this approach, the beneficiaries are everyone: from owners, investors, and tenants, to clients and other people using or living near the property. We operate primarily for investment funds. We can also support enterprises with real estate, including telecoms or financial institutions, including banks, by offering management of banks’ branches, including management of lease agreements or technical maintenance, as well as assets such as commercial or office real estate taken over by banks, focusing not only on optimizing their operation but also on generating profits.

WZ: in the maze of evolving regulations and requirements for property owners, we are also a real support for entities for which real estate or commercial space is necessary, but is not the primary source of generating income. We take care of cost optimization and ensure optimal technical conditions and compliance with all applicable legal standards, removing numerous administrative duties from property owners.

Through the eyes of professionals from Ceres specialising in generating additional value from real estate: what should investors look for on the market now? In which sectors can you count on interesting opportunities that guarantee a fair profit?

MM: There is no clear answer to this question. Interesting projects can be found in every sector of the market. On the one hand, Central and Eastern Europe and Central and Southern Europe is a constantly emerging hub, creating unique opportunities for manufacturing and logistics companies, and on the other hand, for companies that have been present in Asian regions until now, and as a result of global changes are moving their processes to more stable, secure regions of the world. This generates demand for modern commercial space from the BPO and SSC sectors. Older office properties also benefit from this, which after redevelopment are attractive assets for such companies, often being in very good locations in city centres. You should also pay attention to smaller retail formats, including retail parks and free-standing shopping pavilions. Many smaller urban centres in the CEE and SEE regions lack modern retail space. Retail parks and other smaller formats fit perfectly into this gap. Retail chains are actively looking for expansion opportunities, and developers are following them. As Ceres, we can effectively support developers and owners of built parks, including investment funds, in maintaining the appropriate value of such projects. Our added value is also excellent knowledge of the local markets in CEE and SEE countries, which can be very valuable for entities planning expansion on these markets.

WZ: we also need to remember about core assets in the form of large shopping centres, large office and hotel projects located in city centres. Due to the capital intensity of such investments, in most cases they are available only to specialised institutional investors. However, due to evolving market conditions, they may require certain investments to improve or maintain their market position, and this may encourage some players to restructure their portfolios and liquidate selected assets. Ceres also supports such properties in building a market position and achieving the goals set by the owners through proactive management.