LaSalle taps new head of value-added funds – Exclusive

The series’ current president, who has been with the firm since 1985, is becoming its chairman and will stay with the Chicago-based firm for the next two years.

Jim Hutchinson

LaSalle Investment Management is switching up its value-added fund series’ leadership as part of succession planning, PERE has learned.

Jim Hutchinson, the founder and president of the product line, became its chairman effective February 1, and will retain his presidency title and responsibilities for the first seven funds in the series. He will stay with the Chicago-based firm through 2020 as part of a transition plan. Hutchinson joined LaSalle in 1985 as a member of the firm’s acquisitions group and, over the course of his time at LaSalle, has completed nearly $3 billion of real estate deals. Prior to joining LaSalle, Hutchinson was a senior manager in Deloitte’s audit division.

Joe Munoz, the investment officer for LaSalle Income & Growth Funds V-VII, will now be the series’ chief investment officer and president of future funds going forward. A spokesman for LaSalle declined to comment on the fundraising process.

Munoz joined LaSalle in 2004 as an analyst in the firm’s acquisitions group and moved to the value-added funds group in 2007, where he became a managing director in 2014.

LaSalle closed its first value-added fund in 1996. Since then, the series has raised $2.8 billion across seven funds, the latest of which closed in 2017 on $511 million and is 77 percent committed. Investors in the fund series include the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund and the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System, pension systems that each committed to Funds VI and VII, according to PERE data.

Joe Munoz

“Given the growth and success we have achieved since the inception of the Income & Growth series more than 20 years ago, it is very important that the fund is well-positioned for long-term stability and continued success,” Hutchinson said. “Joe has been a great contributor to the positive momentum and performance since he joined the fund team 10 years ago, and I am confident he is well-equipped to help drive growth and performance going forward.”

LaSalle has deployed $5.8 billion of capital from the value-added series in 98 investments. The fund series focuses on assets with repositioning potential and ground-up development, a strategy that will not change under new leadership, Jason Kern, the firm’s Americas chief executive, told PERE.

“We will continue to play to the strengths of the fund team and the strengths of LaSalle’s North America platform, while being mindful of the current investment environment,” Kern said.

Overall, the firm manages $58 billion in public and private equity and in debt, according to its website.