iO Partners Analysis: Private medical sector emerges as key tenant in office buildings

The rapid growth of the private medical sector is also making waves in real estate: major networks of private clinics and hospitals in Bucharest currently occupy spaces totaling over 215,000 square meters, as per an analysis by real estate services company iO Partners. About 40% of this area, equivalent to 86,000 square meters, comprises leased spaces in modern office buildings, often strategically situated near major office hubs in northern, central, and western Bucharest.

The remaining spaces utilized by the private medical sector, approximately 130,000 square meters, are leased either in non-competitive market buildings or are situated in buildings owned directly by medical operators. The competitive market includes leased office buildings of class A and B, with a minimum leasable area of 2,000 square meters, delivered since the beginning of 2000.

In recent years, there has been a steady rise in the population’s incomes, and the COVID-19 pandemic has amplified interest in health matters, especially prevention.

“Private clinics and hospitals have become an integral part of the office space market, though they come with specific and complex requirements compared to typical office tenants. Not every space is suitable for such services, so a thorough analysis is necessary before making any decisions“, notes Maria Florea, Head of Office Advisory at iO Partners Romania.

Over the past two years, the private medical sector has leased over 40,000 square meters in modern office buildings in Bucharest. This means that spaces leased by private medical operators now represent about 2.5% of the total modern office space available in Bucharest, which is approximately 3.4 million square meters.

There is still significant potential for the expansion or relocation of private medical clinics to higher-quality spaces or more strategically located premises in relation to potential clients and public transportation networks. Many areas in Bucharest, particularly major residential neighborhoods, and certain office areas, still lack sufficient private medical facilities. At the same time, there is ample room for expansion in regional and medium-sized cities.

“Private medical service operators seek to position their spaces near the main office areas of the city, as these areas provide them with a steady and consistent flow of customers”, notes Alexandru David, Head of Research at iO Partners Romania. According to analyses conducted by his department, the top preferences of medical operators include the office areas of Dimitrie Pompeiu (31% of the area occupied by medical operators), the Central Business District (21%), Floreasca – Barbu Văcărescu (18%), and the Center-West (14%).