VVO Group’s turnover and profit were excellent in 2015, despite the overall economic situation. At the end of the year, the fair value of our investment properties was EUR 4.0 billion. We invested more than EUR 235 million in new development, in acquiring old housing stock, and in renovation. Our goal is to increase the number of apartments by 1,000 per year. A total of 1,189 privately financed rental apartments were under construction at the end of the review period.
The year 2015 included many changes that were essential for the implementation of our strategy.
We started using the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) to ensure that financing channels can be utilised in a more versatile manner and that we can invest strongly in the future, too.
To fulfil the wishes of customers, we launched an online apartment rental service at www.lumo.fi/kotinyt. The Lumo kotinyt.fi is a completely new way to rent an apartment immediately. We believe that the customer is the expert when it comes their living choices, so we handed over the decision-making power to them: the customer chooses a suitable Lumo rental apartment, pays the rent for the first month and can move in on the next weekday, for instance. The first couple of days already showed that the new apartment rental service is a great success.
Our customers are also interested in environmentally friendly car sharing. In Helsinki, Espoo, Tampere, Jyväskylä, and Turku, we introduced car sharing in certain Lumo properties.
With these and other innovative services, we offer our customers easy and flexible housing.
At the end of 2015, VVO Group declared that, in the future, it will focus on market-based operations and announced the transfer of 8,631 cost principle, state-subsidised ARA rental apartments to Y-Asunnot.
We also commented on the strategic Government Programme and issued our own theses. The Government Programme contains a lot of good and long-awaited measures that would improve the preconditions for building rental apartments.
In the spirit of the climate agreement, we joined the Climate Leadership Council and committed to developing climate-friendly housing solutions.
As a one VVO team, we want to develop in order to be able to serve our customers even better. For this reason, we also participate in the Great Place to Work survey, the results of which provide us with a good benchmark for our journey towards becoming a better employer and landlord.
I would like to thank everyone for the good review period!