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Canadians accelerate investments in Portugal to reach 1 billion by 2023.

13 November, 2021
Canadians accelerate investments in Portugal to reach 1 billion by 2023.

Neither the pandemic nor the political crisis stop Mercan Properties' bet in the country. The company does not rule out growing through acquisition but is more focused on creating assets from scratch. It wants to reach the end of 2023 with more than two dozen projects on national soil, and it expects to create 2000 direct jobs.

Currently, Mercan Properties has 14 real estate projects under development in the tourism sector, in locations such as Porto, Vila Nova de Gaia, Matosinhos, Lisbon, Amarante, Évora and Algarve. The investment is estimated at 400 million euros. But it doesn't stop there. The group wants to add 600 million more to this figure by the end of 2023, reaching the threshold of one billion euros and creating two thousand direct jobs.

"We started in Portugal in 2015. At the time, with a single project, Casa da Companhia, which is a hotel that we completed and opened in July. However, we have already opened the second in Amarante, Casa das Lérias. There are two buildings with a history , unlike other projects that we have in progress and that we intend to open at the beginning of next year. To date, we have 14 projects. The total investment is 400 million euros. In the next two years we are going to expand this volume up to one billion euros", he tells in an interview to Dinheiro Vivo Miguel Gomes, Construction & Development General Manager of Mercan Properties.

Mercan assumes a diversity in terms of category of hotel units, with luxury segments as the cheapest. "We are also thinking about walking in the area of ​​well-being and wellness, they are surprises that we will launch soon", he admits. In geographic terms, the company is also betting on diversification. At the moment, it has seven projects in Porto, two more in the surroundings - in Matosinhos and in Gaia - and another in Amarante (Casa das Lérias). One in greater Lisbon, two in Évora and one in the Algarve.

Mercan Properties' business model is primarily based on seeking and finding opportunities. In many cases, it is a question of starting from scratch: finding the land, carrying out studies, moving on to licensing and, later, building the hotel. With the unit ready, the management is in charge of Mercan, which within the group has a company specialized in this business (Ace Hospitality Management). In addition, Mercan works under franchising of international brands such as Hilton and Marriott. "We do not have hotels managed outside the group. It is strategic for us to always control the operation, for several reasons, but from the outset to ensure that Mercan maintains its quality standards."

The expansion of the portfolio foreseen in Portugal until the end of 2023, and which should surpass the two dozen hotel units, will require a lot of human resources, not least because the management is under the responsibility of the company itself. "With our 14 units we have foreseen 900 direct jobs and they are very proportional to the jobs that we have generated in the construction phase, even if they are not direct. At the end of this plan, which we have until 2023, we will always be talking over 2000 jobs", reveals Miguel Gomes.