Jamestown creates Latin America subsidiary

The Atlanta-based real estate investment manager is making its initial foray outside of the US, with a new platform staffed by former Paladin executives.

Jamestown is launching a new Latin America business, which represents the Atlanta-based investment manager’s first venture outside of the US. The new subsidiary, called Jamestown Latin America, will be headed by Philip Fitzgerald, formerly the managing director of emerging markets at Paladin Realty Partners. 

In fact, most of the senior management team of Jamestown Latin America will be composed of former or current executives from the Los Angeles-based real estate fund manager. In addition to Fitzgerald, they include Axel Chaves, who was head of Paladin’s Brazil operations; Pablo Sala, who oversaw the firm’s activities in the Andean region of South America; Joel Bost, a senior vice president of finance and asset management; and Ferhat Guven, who had been a managing director working on capital-raising efforts in Europe and the Middle East. The sixth member of the management team, whose hire has not yet been finalized, will be the sole non-Paladin recruit. 

Fitzgerald, who will serve as chief executive of Jamestown Latin America, will be based in Atlanta, while Chaves will manage the new venture’s Rio de Janeiro office and Sala will head its Bogota, Colombia office. Guven, who will be managing director of investor relations, and Bost, who will be head of finance and capital markets, also will be based in Atlanta.

Fitzgerald, who helped to start, build and manage Paladin’s Latin America business during his 14-year tenure, left the firm last March. Guven, who initially joined Paladin in 2007 to help start an ultimately unsuccessful venture in Turkey, exited the firm in October. Yesterday, Paladin announced the departures of Chaves, Sala and Bost, as well as the hire of Sala’s replacement, Alejando Krell. Chaves will be leaving Paladin on Friday and officially joining Jamestown on Monday, while Sala and Bost, who also are still at the firm, are expected to come on board by early April.

Jamestown is seeding its new Latin America platform with a starting equity commitment of $50 million for its balance sheet. Jamestown Latin America initially will be focused on the Andean region of South America and Brazil, with plans to eventually expand to Mexico. Investments likely would include a mix of for-sale residential and income-producing retail, office and industrial properties. 

Jamestown Latin America is expected to initially raise capital through joint ventures, co-investments and club deals and eventually raise a commingled fund that could target as much as $200 million in equity. The overall goal is to have at least  $1 billion of capital under management within the next few years. 

Jamestown had been examining opportunities in emerging markets for some time and, in addition to Latin America, had looked at Turkey, Asia and Africa. The firm, which was formed in 1983, is known as a pioneer in cross-border real estate transactions, having been one of the first to bring German institutional capital into the US. The firm has sponsored 27 core and core-plus funds and five opportunity funds, raising approximately $4 billion in equity. Its flagship core and core-plus investment vehicle is Jamestown Premier, which invests in office and retail properties in major metropolitan centers, including New York, Boston, Washington DC and San Francisco.