Mirvac Group (ASX: MGR) and Dexus Property Group (ASX: DXS) both recently featured in the AFR’s “10 most innovative property, construction and transport companies” list.

It got me thinking, are Mirvac and Dexus shares worth buying today?

About Mirvac and Dexus

Dexus Property Group is one of Australia’s largest property groups, with a focus on commercial properties such as offices. Its office and industrial properties that it directly owns are worth $13.9 billion.

Mirvac is a leading Australian property group with approximately $21 billion of assets under management. Operations include both commercial and residential projects, primarily based in Sydney and Melbourne, but also include Brisbane and Perth developments.

Most Innovative Companies

The AFR recently released its list of the 10 most innovative property, construction and transport companies in Australia, ranking Dexus tenth and Mirvac first.

Dexus made it on to the list for their SuiteX idea, which involves ten flexible workspaces with movable walls that allow customers to choose how much space they need. SuiteX also allows short-term leases between six months and two years, providing a flexible option for growing companies.

SuiteX incorporates private meeting spaces, premium furniture and suite signage with customer logos. So far, there is one SuiteX operating in Sydney as a pilot initiative.

For Mirvac, the top award will be added to the several other awards it has previously won for sustainability and innovation.

In 2017, Mirvac was ranked the world’s most sustainable real estate company by the Dow Jones Sustainability Index, and in 2018 Mirvac was ranked number one in JP Morgan’s ESGQ Stock Screens report.

This time around, Mirvac won the innovation award thanks to its Cultivate initiative, which converts under-used or vacant spaces into urban farms. Cultivate uses low-waste methods to create these urban farms which produce food that can be purchased by local businesses and they also run 45-minute urban farming sessions.

Mirvac also claimed in their recent FY19 report that 25% of their workforce is trained in the Hatch methodology, which is the in-house innovation program that’s been running since 2014. In FY19, Cultivate was just one of three start-ups created by “intrapreneurs” in the Hatch program. One employee even ended up as a co-founder of an initiative that was spun out of Mirvac.

Are Mirvac And Dexus A Buy?

While I’m not sure about the valuations, these two businesses both have a key trait that investors should look for in any potential investment – innovation.

Innovative companies are able to develop a competitive advantage and, more importantly, sustain the advantage for a long period of time. That’s why, for the right price, I’d consider both of these companies as possible investments.

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Disclaimer: Any information contained in this article is limited to general financial/investment advice only. The information has not taken into account your specific needs, goals or objectives, so please consider consulting a licenced and trusted adviser before acting on the information. Please read The Rask Group’s Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information. This article is authorised by Owen Raszkiewicz of The Rask Group, which is a corporate authorised representative No. 1264179 of Strawman Pty Ltd (ACN: 610 908 211) (AFSL: 501 223).

Disclosure: At the time of writing, Max does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned.