I was supposed to go on a walking trip in Japan this November,” reveals Regina Lim while she was getting her hair and makeup done for this photoshoot. There was a slight tone of regret in her voice, which was understandable. Lim, the Head of Capital Markets Research, APAC, at Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL), like most of us, has been staying and working from home for the past few months.
This new way of life, where work is remotely done from home, and retail activity has largely shifted online, many have begged the question, “What now?” Aside from wondering when we’ll be able to travel for leisure, we also want to know what the future holds for offices and office buildings now that COVID-19 has proven that working from home is a viable option. How will shopping malls and physical retail spaces change now that e-commerce has become the norm? This is where Lim and her team come in.
“I lead JLL’s Asia Pacific Capital Markets Research team, where we track capital trends in the real estate landscape for Asia Pacific. We also provide agile, predictive, and actionable research and insights to investment managers, insurance, pension, and sovereign wealth funds,” explains Lim. “I love this role as it involves figuring out how real estate, economics, and even politics could change over the next five to ten years, which trends could prevail, and how we should best invest. The job utilizes my experience in urban planning, government policies, and equities research very well.”
The Great Shake-Up
According to Lim, COVID-19 started to become a real cause for concern when Wuhan initiated a lockdown just before Lunar New Year. “Knowing how important this time was for China, and how intelligent and far-sighted the Chinese government is, I knew it was no small matter and that we should brace ourselves for slower growth in China and the Asia Pacific. Little did I expect the pandemic to affect the whole world.”
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