Anne Pfeiffer, head of US real estate commingled funds at JPMorgan Asset Management, is leaving the New York-based asset manager after more than three decades at the firm. PERE understands that Pfeiffer informed investors last month that she is retiring in October. A replacement for the position has not yet been determined.
As head of US real estate commingled funds, Pfeiffer manages a seven-person portfolio management team and serves as the lead portfolio manager for JPMorgan Strategic Property Fund (SPF), the firm’s flagship core US real estate fund. With $23 billion in gross assets, SPF is the largest open-ended core property vehicle on the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries’ Open-end Diversified Core Equity (ODCE) index.
SPF generated a 12.1 percent return at the end of 2012, beating the ODCE benchmark of 8.4 percent, and had a capital queue of $1.485 million as of September 30, according to a February document from the State Universities Retirement System of Illinois. Among the fund’s most prominent assets are the International Toy Center in New York, the Landmark Center in Boston and Century Park in Los Angeles.
Kim Adams and Ann Cole, currently assistant portfolio managers of SPF, jointly will serve as co-portfolio managers of the vehicle once Pfeiffer departs. Both Adams and Cole were added to the fund’s portfolio management team in July 2012, after Pfeiffer had served as SPF’s sole portfolio manager since the vehicle’s inception in 1998. “With SPF surpassing $23 billion in gross assets, I believe the fund will now benefit from an expanded portfolio management team in fulfilling the multitude of fund responsibilities,” Pfeiffer wrote in an email to investors and consultants at the time.
Despite Pfeiffer’s long tenure at JPMorgan, her retirement apparently was anticipated to be imminent. “Although the manager has indicated that they do not expect Anne Pfeiffer, the lead portfolio manager, to be retiring any time soon, this organization change should help in future succession planning since Pfeiffer has been with the organization for over 30 years,” Courtland Partners noted in a July 2012 memorandum to the Los Angeles Water and Power Employees’ Retirement Plan, on the expansion of the SPF team.
The other real estate funds that Pfeiffer oversees include the Special Situation Property Fund, a $3.1 billion value-added vehicle; the $647 million Alternative Property Fund; Diversified Commercial Property Fund, a $372.8 million defined contribution vehicle; and the $2.3 billion core-plus US Income & Growth Fund.
Pfeiffer is the longest-serving employee within the senior management of JPMorgan’s global real assets team, having been with the firm since 1979. She first joined as a senior finance officer and went on to serve in numerous other roles, including head of the finance group, senior asset manager and acquisitions officer. Within the acquisitions group, she was responsible for originating, analyzing and negotiating commercial real estate transactions. Prior to JPMorgan, Pfeiffer was a supervising accountant at Coopers & Lybrand.