Fosun in talks to buy Japanese firm IDERA

The Chinese conglomerate is understood to be in the due diligence phase of acquiring boutique domestic manager IDERA.

Fosun International, China’s largest privately-owned conglomerate, is set to break into the Japanese private real estate market with the acquisition of Tokyo-based real estate investment management firm IDERA Capital Management, PERE can reveal.

The conglomerate is understood to be in due diligence to buy IDERA, which is led by chairman Mikihisa Hirai and which has ¥200 billion (€1.4 billion; $1.9 billion) of assets under management, and a deal to bring IDERA under the Fosun umbrella could be completed as soon as the end of the month.

IDERA was formed in 2012 through a merger between Atlas Partners Japan and MK Capital Management Corporation, two asset management firms. It invests institutional capital into private real estate deals and has raised funds alongside Danish multi-manager Sparinvest Property Investors.

Fosun currently has no real estate operations in Japan. However, over the past few years, chairman Guo Guangchang and other Fosun officials have publicly discussed multiple corporate and public markets investments in Japan, especially following the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. Those discussions have not included investments in real estate specifically.

Further, while there has been a large expatriation of capital to international markets from China in recent years, and although Fosun has been active abroad in other asset classes, its property activities have, until lately, been few. However, late last month, the conglomerate was reported to have led a consortium of investors in a bid for a large site in Greece valued at €915 million.

According to a LinkedIn post by Fosun, the company recently started looking for a chief financial officer for Japan, with duties including helping to “develop and implement strategies to grow the company with AUM from fund management and third party asset management.”

Both IDERA and Fosun declined to comment when approached.