EXCLUSIVE: Spin-out SilkRoad raises first capital

The Singapore-based real estate investment management firm has raised $230 million for the first closing of its Asia value-add fund.

Singapore-based SilkRoad Property Partners, the real estate investment management firm spun out of global real estate fund manager AEW’s Asia platform, has held a first close of its debut Asia fund, PERE can reveal.

The firm raised $230 million in equity for the pan-Asia fund, which will be closed-ended in nature and have a value-add strategy. A fundraising target of $350 million has been set for the fund called SilkRoad Asia Value Partners LP, with the remainder of the money to be raised within the next 18 months.

The fund will have an eight-year term cycle. The capital raised is expected to be invested in value-add opportunities in Hong Kong, Singapore and Tier 1 cities in China such as Shanghai, Beijing and Shenzhen. All asset classes will be considered for investment.

PERE understands that fundraising for the vehicle began in August last year. The LPs to have committed so far are thought to be largely European institutional investors, including insurance companies and provident funds.

The debut Asia fund comes more than two years after the firm was launched by key executives from AEW’s Asia team. Led by Peter Wittendorp, who was heading the Boston-based firm’s Asia-Pacific operations before moving on to SilkRoad Partners, the firm has five other former AEW executives and operates out of Singapore and Hong Kong. 

Following the spin-out, SilkRoad Property Partners continued to manage the assets for the firm’s real estate in Asia, with Wittendorp continuing his role as the portfolio manager for AEW Value Investors’ Asia fund, the firm’s first dedicated fund in the region. 

It is also believed that some of the LPs of SilkRoad’s Asia fund had invested in AEW’s funds previously.

In July 2013, AEW Value Investors Asia, which attracted $558 million of equity from investors, was fully exited and the sales achieved a net IRR of 13 percent.

SilkRoad declined to comment on the fundraising.