Online auctions draw in international buyers, expanding commercial property markets | Everything Property

Online auctions draw in international buyers, expanding commercial property markets

international buyers


The value of the global property market exceeds $326.5 trillion, nearly four times greater than the global GDP, making it the world’s most substantial asset class.

When the pandemic put the planet in lockdown, industries everywhere had to reassess how they conducted business. The real estate industry was an early adopter of digital communication then. With lockdowns and social distancing measures in place, real estate agents and professionals had to quickly find alternative ways to continue conducting business, and digital communication technologies were an obvious solution.

Property professionals started using virtual property tours, 3D walkthroughs, and live video conferencing to show properties to clients remotely. They also began leveraging digital tools and platforms, such as online listing portals and property management software, to manage transactions and stay connected with clients.

Moreover, the industry quickly adapted to online auctions and mobile apps to facilitate the bidding process, and auctioneers adapted to the changing circumstances by embracing online auctions and leveraging innovative mobile apps to stimulate the bidding process.

These changes enabled the industry to continue operating despite the restrictions imposed by the pandemic and, in some cases, even improved the efficiency and convenience of real estate transactions. Some auction houses will run online and traditional in-person events simultaneously. Online auctions enable access to a broader pool of international buyers. In contrast, the excitement of an in-person auction often leads to the best possible outcome for both buyer and seller. 


High Street Auctions Director Greg Dart says the most significant returns nationwide are likely to be realised on strategic assets ideally situated to benefit from leveraging both natural and forced appreciation. “On the business front, there’s already greater demand/supply parity in Cape Town’s commercial and industrial real estate market than anywhere else in the country, but that’s changing. Smart investors will move swiftly before it turns.”

Interestingly, the investment appeal of industrial property stretches far beyond the Western Cape. Rapid growth in online shopping forced those companies to expand, directly competing with terrestrial retail suppliers for state-of-the-art industrial warehousing in the major cities and outlying regional hubs. He explains how Covid vividly demonstrated our supply chain vulnerabilities, resulting in demand for networked infrastructure development to facilitate seamless product distribution through regional and local hubs. 

“High Street is actively pursuing opportunities for investors in this asset class now. The reasons are numerous; market strength, stability, resilience, and long-term growth potential to name but a few.” 


Ongoing moves by property funds to consolidate their retail assets create opportunities for independent investors to break into this lucrative sector.

According to the Clur Shopping Centre Index, trading density performance and growth at South African shopping centres in 2022 was the highest in four years. The index is derived from The Clur Report. This asset management industry standard tracks performance for listed and unlisted property funds of more than four million metres of prime retail space (100+ centres) across South Africa and Namibia.

“In 2018 and 2019 alone, High Street realised approximately half a billion rand for Shoprite by auctioning off a dozen non-core assets. Subsequently, we’ve done the same for several other funds and even at the height of the pandemic, investor appetite for our auction retail properties didn’t wane,” says Dart.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

To Top

Pin It on Pinterest