Blog Norbert Bol

Last week I spoke at the combined IFHE World Congress and NVTG Congress.
The central theme was “Sharing knowledge for better healthcare world wide”.
In sharing knowledge I gave insight in how private real estate- and infrastructure investors look at healthcare now and in the future.

Private investors see that there is a growing demand for healthcare investments because of a growing world population with a longer lifespan and where there is a global trend in diminishing public investments.

This is good news, however, because these trends do not translate into a sunny growth market for private investors who would like to invest in so called "healthcare buildings". Due to innovations and changes in social behavior the future might look quite different. Of course we will need specialized buildings such as hospitals or permanent facilities, however investors will view those type of investments more as infrastructure like investment. This means that a specific building such as a hospital will be financed for a fixed lengthy period of time including all necessary services, where the end value of the investment is 'zero'.

When it comes to the more daily healthcare facilities, it is logical to predict that these facilities do not predominantly have to be in specific buildings as people will not want to be associated all day with their illnesses, but prefer to live in a social environment of their own choosing. Real estate like investments in healthcare therefore should predominantly be seen as temporary, as innovations and change of behavior will happen.

To summarize. Investors in healthcare facilities distinguish between specific healthcare buildings and generic buildings that can facilitate some form of healthcare. Specific building in care and cure will be financed by infrastructure like investors. Generic buildings owned by real estate investors can facilitate healthcare facilities on their own terms based on what the local community finds an attractive offer.

Norbert Bol, CEO Sweco Capital Consultants
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