Greystar makes key changes to global capital raising team

The South Carolina-based Greystar has restructured the leadership of the team on the back of the firm’s growth in the Asia-Pacific region.

Greystar is making several key changes to its global capital raising team, PERE has learned.

PERE understands that Jennifer Ciullo has been elevated to senior managing director of global investor relations at the South Carolina-based manager, effective March 1. She replaces Adam Pillay, who previously both led the global investor relations team and oversaw Greystar’s investment management business in Asia Pacific, including China, Japan and Australia. With Ciullo’s promotion, Pillay, who is based in Sydney, will focus his time on the latter role.

New York-based Ciullo previously was managing director of investor relations for Greystar’s global investment management business, responsible for North American institutional investor relationships and fundraising for all of Greystar’s global investment strategies. She also supported business development efforts for the investment management business. Ciullo remains a member of the firm’s executive committee.

Jen Ciullo Greystar
Ciullo: taking over the fundraising reins from Pillay

Additionally, Greystar has hired its first managing director of Asia-Pacific investor relations, Bianca Solomons, who previously was head of institutional capital and head of debt at Australian alternative investment manager Alceon Group. Solomons has over 12 years of experience and, prior to Alceon, worked at Australia and New Zealand Banking Group for eight years on underwriting, arranging and syndicating corporate and structured loans. She joined Greystar last week and will be based in Sydney.

“Bianca’s strong technical and investing experience will be critical as we continue to raise capital to grow the Asia-Pacific platform,” Pillay said in a soon-to-be-released announcement. “She has a deep understanding of institutional investor needs and a strong track record of sourcing equity and debt capital for real estate strategies. She will be instrumental in the evolution of our investment management platform and our real estate credit strategies in the coming years ahead.”

The creation of the Asia IR head role reflects the growth of Greystar’s Asia-Pacific business, which was launched in 2016 with the formation of a Asia-Pacific rental housing platform with Macquarie Capital. Today, the regional platform has $4 billion of assets under management and a team of approximately 85 people.

The firm is actively investing across multiple strategies in the APAC region, including multifamily development, value-add acquisitions, logistics and tactical credit opportunities.

Solomons’s hire will also enhance Greystar’s credit capability and expand the firm’s debt financing relationships in the APAC region. Up to 30 percent of the firm’s new Asia-focused vehicle, Greystar Equity Partners Asia Pacific Fund I, can be invested in credit strategies, PERE understands.

Bianca Solomons Greystar
Solomons: Greystar’s first Asia-Pacific head of investor relations

Pillay and Ciullo both joined Greystar in 2017, as part of a four-person team of capital raisers that came over from JPMorgan Asset Management, as PERE previously reported. Other members of the investor relations team include Rachael Brittingham, who joined Greystar in 2016 and leads the global client relations group. Brittingham, who oversees global investor communications and works on investor due diligence for new ventures, was also promoted to senior managing director as of March 1.

“It is almost six years to the day since I joined Greystar, and over this time, I have seen the business grow significantly across geographies and product types with both new and existing partners,” Ciullo said. “I am pleased to be taking the reins from my long-time colleague Adam Pillay, as he focuses on our growing Asia-Pacific platform, and I look forward to leading our exceptional team.”

Greystar’s most recent fundraises included Greystar Credit Partners III, a $600 million commercial real estate debt fund that closed in December; the €1.55 billion Greystar Equity Partners Europe I, which concluded in July; and Greystar Equity Partners Asia Pacific Fund I, which raised a total of $275 million in May, according to an SEC filing. The firm also is in market with Greystar Equity Partners XI, which to date has raised capital from investors such as the South Carolina Retirement System, which committed up to $150 million to the fund in May.