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Alts Agenda – US$100bn real estate group to expand Asia wealth offerings

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Real estate investor and developer Hines, which has about US$100 billion in AUM, is looking at increasing its investment offerings in Asia to capture growth in the region’s private wealth market.

This is according to the US-headquartered firm’s Asia CIO, Chiang Ling Ng. “Hines was not hit materially by COVID restrictions. We’ve continued to be able to hire and build our team. In Asia, we have around 300 people across India, China, Japan, Korea, Australia, Singapore, and most recently opened offices in Vietnam as well as in New Zealand,” she told Asian Private Banker.

Vietnam is one of the key markets that many companies are looking at from an investment
perspective, commented Ng. The market benefits from manufacturing, especially logistics, manufacturing-related activities, and a stronger supply chain, she added.

“New Zealand has been another interesting market for investors seeking more stability since the market appears to be more attractive from a risk-return perspective,” she explained.

“We see compelling opportunities in New Zealand, especially in the build-to-rent, value add office and logistics /industrial sectors, and its marketplace is a natural extension to what our teams are already doing in Australia,” said Ray Lawler, CEO, Asia Pacific of Hines, in an announcement in April.

New Asia offering

Founded in 1957, Hines is a privately owned global real estate investment, development and management firm, with a presence in 395 cities in 30 countries. In recent years, Asian markets have been a future focus for the firm.

“This year, we are working on starting a new value strategy fund in Asia. Hines currently
manages Hines Asia Property Partners in the region, which is a diversified, operator-led, core
plus real estate vehicle that invests in high-quality living, industrial, office, mixed-use and select
niche sectors across Asia Pacific,” Ng said.

By 2030, Asia Pacific, led by China, will account for nearly half of the world’s output, more than 50% of the world’s urban population and almost all of the top 50 global cities with the largest forecast change in wealthy households, according to a recent report by Nuveen Real Estate.

For the Asia Core Plus Fund, industrial and office funds account for 42% and 37% of the AUM

Logistics and offices portfolio

As of end-2022, Hines managed almost US$100 billion in assets globally, serving more than 600 HNWIs and 150K retail investors.

Source: Hines, as of December 31st, 2022

In the US, Hines has Hines U.S. Property Partners, which is a diversified, core-plus real estate vehicle. It also has the Hines U.S. Property Recovery Fund series, which seeks real estate investment opportunities that arise from dislocation and long-term industry changes. In Europe, it has core, core-plus and recovery strategies.

Separately, it also has Hines Global Income Trust, which is a public, non-traded real estate investment trust sponsored by Hines available to qualified individual investors through participating financial professionals.

In America, where Hines is most firmly established, the firm also has sizeable retail fund offerings.

“We are planning to expand these offerings to Asia in the not-so-distant future. We endeavour to bring products that are similar to what we’re doing in the US over here to Asia, including more offerings in the private retail investor space,” Ng said.

“The firm invested in One Museum Place, a very large development in Shanghai, 10 years ago
and we have a few developments that are in progress. We want to offer something that is more
accessible to investors,” she said.

Hines’ One Museum Place is a 1.4 million-square-foot, 60-story prime office tower with a six-story retail podium in Shanghai. Source: Hines

Ex-Goldman Sachs, M&G

Ng joined Hines in 2021 as CIO, Asia. Prior to Hines, she most recently served as the CEO and CIO for M&G Real Estate’s Asia business overseeing all of the company’s operations and investment decisions.

Before that, she worked in the real estate private equity division of Goldman Sachs where she oversaw its expansion into China and was responsible for investments and coverage across Asia Pacific.

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