18 February 2019
Together with Greystar Real Estate Partners, APG Asset Management N.V., and Macquarie Real Estate Investments, Bouwinvest announced the close of a China-focused fund with US$450 million in equity commitments.
Greystar established its Asia-Pacific rental housing platform (“Greystar Asia-Pac”) with MIRA Real Estate last year and is now joined by APG Asset Management N.V. who intends to support the platform’s rental housing strategy across the region. The platform combines the partners’ substantial relationships and proven track record in the region with Greystar’s deep rental housing expertise to serve as the pre-eminent, vertically integrated owner, developer, and operator of rental housing in Asia-Pacific.
The China-focused fund is the first within Greystar Asia-Pac. The fund will invest in high-quality assets in top-tier Chinese markets with an initial focus on Shanghai, owing to the city’s attractive rental housing supply and demand fundamentals.
“China is an extraordinarily compelling growth market for rental housing investment today and is notably lacking in quality housing for the wave of renter demand driven by the rapid growth of urban market populations and incomes,” said Wes Fuller, leader of Greystar’s global Investment Management business. “Establishing this fund gives us an early mover advantage to implement our unique investment strategy by assembling and operating an unrivaled rental housing portfolio at scale.”
“We are in the process of building a vertically integrated local team with specialists in development, investment and operations unique in this market. The team will be locally managed but supported by Greystar’s global team, network, and capital,” said Charles Ma, Managing Director for Greystar in China. “We will lead in professionalizing the rental housing industry in China and are uniquely positioned to do so. Our investment strategy will allow us to develop a significant rental housing pipeline in China and grow our platform to realize the tremendous opportunity we see in the region.”
Immediately following acceptance of the new capital commitments, the partnership will close on the funds initial investment located in the inner ring of Shanghai. Greystar’s plans include a comprehensive repositioning program to configure the asset into a rental building highly attractive for executives.
“APG is already a long-term investor in rented residential strategies in both Europe and the U.S. We expect this sector to establish itself very quickly as an institutional asset class throughout Asia-Pacific,” said Graeme Torre, APG’s Head of Private Real Estate Asia-Pacific. “Partnering with Greystar and Macquarie at the platform level provides the ability for us to consider the sector on a regional basis. We also see Greystar’s first-class operating capabilities combined with like-minded investors such as APG and Bouwinvest as a distinct head start to the first China development venture.”
“Bouwinvest has extensive experience investing in and managing rental housing, both through our flagship fund in the Netherlands and our international investments globally. This investment in the China multifamily sector builds on that track record and is highly complementary to our recent investment in a rental housing portfolio in central Tokyo,” said Tjarko Edzes, Director for Asia-Pacific Investments for Bouwinvest. “We are pleased to further expand our investment exposure in the Asia-Pacific region, where Bouwinvest has recently opened a local office. We are delighted to partner with both Greystar and APG in this initial venture.
“There is a significant gap in the Asia-Pacific region for quality rental housing provided by specialist managers. Having worked closely with Greystar in the United States and United Kingdom over the last decade, the opportunity to work together across Asia-Pacific and introduce Greystar’s proven expertise and experience is highly compelling,” said Brett Robson, Global Head of MIRA Real Estate. “We are delighted to partner with Greystar, reflecting this being consistent with our strategy of partnering with leading specialist operators around the world.”