Cornel Dogaru
CEO
BTDConstruct & Ambient

02 July 2021

BTDConstruct & Ambient SRL was founded in 2013 in Romania and is composed of a strong team of professionals who specialize in construction and interior design services. The company is part of a construction trust – BTD & Affiliates – that includes 4 interconnected limited liabilities companies. Among some of their most notable projects are: H Pipera Lake, Central, H Victoriei 109 and Luxuria Domenii Residence. BTD’s upcoming residential project to look for: Up-site Bucharest. 

 

You laid the foundation for BTD back in 2013, how have you seen the construction market changing during this time?

It hasn't changed in notable ways, unfortunately our sector tends to be more conservative than others. However, we do see a technological revolution on the horizon as a result of intensified pollution on one hand, and less available workforce on the other. Green buildings and sustainable projects are now the subject of more conversations and it’s something that we welcome at BTD. In fact, we have been implementing solutions in this regard for a while now, from thermal insulation to generous green spaces and waste management.

What real estate segment best serves your business presently and what is the general vision for the company?

The residential sector takes up to 95% of our portfolio and we focus mainly on Bucharest market, although we have started prospecting international markets as well. We collaborate with pre-eminent developers such as Speedwell, Accor, Hagag etc., originating from various geographies (from Belgium to Israel to Greece, Spain etc.). In terms of vision, we place a special emphasis on teamwork. This approach carried us through many successful projects, so we want to keep bringing on board specialists that are solution-minded and have an excellent construction background.

 

There are multiple elements considered when deciding which project is worth taking on: we check whether the developer has enough resources to finish the project and thoroughly assess the areas where we're going to build.

Bucharest North is for instance a safe zone presently, because the selling price is still high compared to other areas, there is no inflation of projects and it’s also a highly sought-after area by investors (including for build-to-rent).

 

Oftentimes Romania is perceived as a risky destination for investment. Having done business here for almost a decade now, would you say the reality matches the perception?

I disagree actually. Contrary to what some international players might think, it is extremely easy to develop a profitable business here. The market is really effervescent at this point in time and enough demand is generated especially if we talk about Bucharest. Add to this the fact that the economic growth has been substantial in the past few years. It's true that some developers focus on more traditional, low quality projects, but many in turn have realized that this is not the way to go and focus on high-grade, efficient buildings.

Digitalization and sustainability are sometimes regarded as buzzwords. Do you notice a real progress in this direction and how are you supporting this trend?

Digitalization has been a real focus for us. We made a decision to go fully digital and have been preparing this change for almost two years now. We started the implementation in November 2020 and are just getting ready to finalize the first phase that will include several internal processes, from documents and procedures management to acquisition processes etc. The way I see it, even though the overall investment is not negligible, digitalization costs are extremely low in comparison to the huge benefits they bring to a company. Our employees are already using various systems dedicated to our specific field (especially 5D BIM modelling program) and find them extremely helpful and streamlined.

Let's turn our attention to the future for a moment. What goals is the BTD team pursuing in the coming few years, and how do you expect the broader marker to evolve?

In 2022 we expect BTD to be a 100% digitalized company and, in a few years’ time, we should have amassed enough maturity to start exploring international markets and compete with established players in CEE. We will always hold ourselves true to the initial mission of BTDConstruct & Ambient – that of going Beyond the details for our projects – never losing sight of what we set out to accomplish in the first place: a better city to live in.

As for the market at large, efficient investments that have a proper plan behind them are sure to thrive here. There is enough room to develop incredible projects and we really encourage players to take a leap of faith and contribute to the healthy and modern expansion of Bucharest. I'm hoping to see the industrialization of the construction sectors taking off (prefabs, integrated systems and less manual labor would be ideals of the future) and, in terms of development, I see most opportunity for satellite towns, built around Bucharest and other major cities.



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