Search’s integration into the global SGS company is resulting in interesting types of cross-fertilisation. The linking of local knowhow and a global network has resulted in great projects, such as the major technical due diligence assessment SGS Search has recently carried out in Spain.
SGS Search recently conducted several major TDD assessments in eight hotel buildings in Spain for a French party called Corum Asset Management. It was crucial that all the buildings undergo technical assessment prior to their intended acquisition.
Bas Glaudemans, a Construction Consultancy project manager, supervised the project on behalf of SGS Search. ‘Together with my colleague Joris Pierik I travelled the length and breadth of Spain in a brief period of time,’ he says with a smile.
Which was not a bad thing, obviously, although there was a lot of work to be carried out. ‘In all, we turned eight former hotel buildings completely inside out, gathering all the facts we needed about the applied construction and installation technology and also about asbestos, fire safety and energy consumption. In this manner we were able to provide Corum Asset Management, the purchasing party, with the best possible understanding of the real estate, the costs to be expected in the next few years, and crucial things to keep in mind with regard to legislation, among other things.’
How is conducting a due diligence assessment in Southern Europe different from conducting a TDD assessment in the Netherlands? ‘Essentially, the work is not all that different. We check things, conduct inspections, ask questions and perform a risk analysis,’ says Glaudemans. ‘What makes it difficult is understanding local legislation. As a technical expert, you cannot be expected to be up to date on all these legal aspects. That’s why we really had to collaborate with our local SGS colleagues. In Spain we were guided by a colleague from SGS Madrid, from the start of the project to the end. It was perfect.’
Philippe Cervesi, the Head of Investments at Corum Asset Management, was very enthusiastic about the way in which the project in Spain was carried out. ‘In the past we have intensively collaborated with SGS Search on projects in the Netherlands. We have now expanded that collaboration to Southern Europe. I am very happy with the manner in which we communicate and with the quality of the reports we receive, which are issued quickly and are complete and very readable. Our contacts can always be reached by telephone for consultations and answers to questions. The combination of expert knowledge and local knowhow ensures that we always comply with all the local laws and regulations, which is a major advantage to us.’
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