JLL Indonesia’s James Allan joins the judging panel at the 2022 Real Estate Asia Awards | [siteJLL Indonesia’s James Allan joins the judging panel at the 2022 Real Estate Asia Awards:name]
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JLL Indonesia’s James Allan joins the judging panel at the 2022 Real Estate Asia Awards

Whilst the real estate industry sees a positive outlook for 2022, owners must stay up to date with market trends and innovation to identify enhancements and increase asset performance and value, says JLL Indonesia Head. 

As the Country Head of JLL, James Allan is responsible for strategic decision making and successful operations of the JLL Indonesia business. James is also responsible for providing oversight to business units ensuring work is delivered to the highest professional standards and exceeding clients’ expectations. 

James has over 20 years of experience in real estate, starting his career in London. He relocated to Shanghai in 2006 to become the Tenant Representation specialist and Head of Markets in the JLL Shanghai office. 

James’ expertise includes leasing, residential, capital markets and tenant representation. Some of the high-profile clients he has worked with include Adidas, WPP, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, DreamWorks, Citibank and Baker & Mckenzie, amongst others. 

His extensive professional experience and expertise have brought him to the judging panel of the 2022 Real Estate Asia Awards. Real Estate Asia sat down with him to talk about the current state of the real estate industry and what property owners can expect post-pandemic as urbanisation increases and work-from-home settings become the norm. 

Can you tell us about the current state of the commercial leasing business in Asia and how it was affected by the pandemic?

Asia Pacific’s commercial property market will stabilise further in 2022 as commercial leasing activities are poised to accelerate. According to JLL’s research, Asia Pacific’s office market will add 6.9 million sqm in supply in 2022, up 13% from last year. We predict that net absorption levels will rise by 20% next year, driven by the expansion of financial, technology, and flexible space operators.

As nations slowly recover from the pandemic, how is the real estate industry bouncing back?

The real estate market in the Asia Pacific has faced some challenges over the last two years. Whilst 2022 will come with some risks, investors remain confident in the long-term trends that will drive demand in this region: ongoing urbanisation; increasing household wealth income and a growing middle class; and the acceleration of e-commerce.

What can property owners and managers expect as more companies allow their employees to continue working from home even after the pandemic?

Employees want more balance in their working patterns, with the office re-emerging as the primary place of work post-pandemic, as homeworking fatigue grows and productivity levels decline.

According to employee surveys that we have conducted, data reveals that employees are increasingly seeking workplaces that support mental, social and physical health, as well as an employer who endorses flexible company policies and an inclusive managerial mindset.

As we start to navigate out of the pandemic, building owners now have an opportunity to leverage their physical spaces to become more human-centric and sustainable in supporting the diverse and evolving working styles of the workforce today.

How is the real estate industry preparing for the projected increase in urbanisation in the Asia Pacific and the rest of the world?

Real estate investors and landlords are missing income opportunities and cost savings as their assets age in Asia Pacific. Half of investment properties in prime locations in Asia Pacific are over 20 years old, leading us to believe that there is over US$40b worth of unrealised value in ageing and underperforming properties regionally.

To stay relevant, attract tenants and meet their evolving demands, landlords and investors alike are increasingly aware of the need to enhance their built assets, ranging from design improvements to extensive upgrades, and even repositioning or repurposing the entire property.

What advice can you give to landlords and property managers to help their businesses adapt to the changing environment?

The key challenge that investors and building owners now face is how to define and implement the right scope of enhancement to deliver the best returns over a specific investment time period. We believe that staying up to date with market trends and keeping an eye on the impact of innovation, coupled with the extensive use of data, benchmarking and analytics will enable investors to identify the optimal asset enhancement strategy, resulting in an increase in asset performance and value.

As a judge in the Real Estate Asia Awards, what do you think sets the winners apart from other contenders?

I’d say innovation that is scalable and drives productivity and quality

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