Architects of Ardian: Strengthening through strategic selection


Inside Ardian, Growth stories

Architects of Ardian: Strengthening through strategic selection

  • 24 June 2024

  • Real Assets

  • Real Estate

Reading time: 5 minutes

    In this series, we tell the stories behind how Ardian’s portfolio companies create lasting change in their sectors. This article focuses on the Ardian Real Estate team and how their transformative strategies contribute to creating sustainable change.

    Unique forward-thinking

    Unique forward-thinking

    As Architects of Lasting Change, our team’s approach to real estate investment is truly unique – we transform cities by investing in and transforming real estate assets into services that make them better places to live.

    At the heart of our strategy lies the concept of ‘strategic selection’; a rigorous process that targets the most promising assets in desirable locations. These are places where supply is inherently low and demand remains constant, if not growing. More so, Ardian’s real estate strategy is more than just a method of selection for acquisition; it’s a comprehensive framework that combines reverence for history with modern innovation, all while upholding Ardian’s principles of sustainability and value creation. It is in the transformation where the strengthening happens – investing today to shape tomorrow by anticipating evolving tenant needs and regulation. This combination of strategic insight and practicality ensures that each project is unique, offering more than just a place to live or work but an experience enriched with quality and attention to detail.

    Not only does the Real Estate team at Ardian focus on acquisitions and refurbishments, but it also seeks opportunities to create modern mixed-use spaces that embody an ambitious new vision of urban life. The team recently announced the acquisition of Costockage, a market leading online marketplace and growing operator for self-storage in France. Costockage offers rental services of storage units with an innovative digital approach.

    We are delighted that Ardian will help us develop the company. We are excited to keep working on a first-class experience to provide storage to people and companies. We’ve pioneered the field of turning unused space into self-storage and are delighted to now have a partner with expertise in both real estate and company development. The self-storage asset class is growing strongly and has its best days ahead.

    Mickael Nadjar & Adam Levy-Zauberman, Costockage Co-Founders

    Commitment to sustainability and value creation

    Commitment to sustainability and value creation

    Ardian’s commitment to sustainability is a critical component across all our strategies – we build to last. Our holistic approach to integrating sustainability and decarbonization reflects our long-standing dedication to making a positive and enduring impact. By quantifying carbon emissions of renovation projects and measuring these against the long-term savings achieved through lowered building emissions, Ardian sets a benchmark in the industry. This is done in addition to focusing on living and working needs and enhancing the user experience. This not only underscores the added financial value for our investors but also highlights our role as environmental stewards. 

    For instance, the transformation of the Melzi D’Eril office building in Milan not only increased its gross leasable area by 40% but also positioned it as a top performer in carbon emission reduction, fully aligned with the net-zero objectives of the Paris Agreement by 2050. 

    Another example is the Temple building in Paris. In collaboration with architect Franklin Azzi, the Ardian Real Estate team created an inspiring office space. The team worked closely with the Paris Architects Guild to maintain the historical significance of the building, as well as upholding sustainable practices, to transform the iconic building into Grade A office spaces. 

    We believe this focused investment philosophy will guide us well into the future as we continue to decarbonize assets in line with the Paris Agreement.

    Stephanie Bensimon, Head of Real Estate, Ardian

    Temple refurbishment – a testament of Ardian’s philosophy

    Temple refurbishment – a testament of Ardian’s philosophy

    The Temple building, nestled in the Le Marais district in central Paris, is a refurbishment project of what was once a telephone exchange building from the 1920s. The building’s location, unique historical characteristics and its magnificent rooftop providing breathtaking views of Paris stood out to Ardian. The building had not been renovated in a century, providing a challenging task to all involved. However, the team still targeted top environmental and technical certifications for the project such as BREEAM; HQE; Effinergie and Wiredscore, put in place initiatives to respect the local community and prioritized tenant well-being – signifying the commitment to enduring results and making it a model for future real estate development. 

    We built the project with minimum demolition to have the minimum impact in terms of sustainable design. The less you demolish a building, the better off you are about carbon footprint.

    Franklin Azzi, Architect

    This project is a clear illustration of Ardian's hands-on approach and culture of excellence, showcasing our ability to transform spaces, enhance sustainability, and ultimately create substantial value for investors and communities alike by providing buildings fit for long-term, low-carbon use.

    By melding historical attributes with modern functionality, the Real Estate team at Ardian creates spaces that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also bespoke for the growing needs of today’s tenants. Combined with investment in services and amenities, the Real Estate team shows how Ardian truly are Architects of Lasting Change.