LaSalle Investment Management confirmed this morning the completion of a deal representing one of Europe’s highest-profile transfers of management functions in private equity real estate since the onset of the 2008 global financial crisis.
In a deal first revealed by PERE last year, it has finally inked a deal to transfer the JER European fund management business covering 11 investments with over 90 assets in two funds in eight separate jurisdictions.
For zero consideration, 12 JER staff are transferring to LaSalle: Chester Barnes, Colin Blackmore, Claire Handley, Deborah Rossiter, Jean-Baptiste Meyer, Dale Condon, David Germer and Christian Perpinya will be based in London; Karim Habra, Chris Zeuner, Petr Kosar and Radka Rajska will be based in Prague, the firm said.
LaSalle was picked as the preferred party to take over the management of JER Europe last year following a protracted process which began in 2010 when investors called on JER to find a new home for the business following poor performance of its funds.
The task at hand is to recover as much value as possible from JER Europe Fund III, which raised €809 million in commitments in 2007 and made 17 investments in assets valued at €1.9 billion, as well JER Europe Fund II, which raised €123 million in 2003 and bought €540 million of assets. The agreement does not include the Marbleton Property Fund, a $321 million joint venture with Moscow-based Alfa Capital Partners.
Simon Marrison, chief executive officer of LaSalle, said today in a statement: “We are pleased to welcome our new colleagues and are eager to integrate the JER European platform and its investors into LaSalle. In this economic environment, investors appreciate the importance of maintaining the stability of the team, managing the assets to maximize the recovery of equity value and the integration well positions us to provide this service.”
Dan Ward, managing director and general counsel at JER US, added: “JER has always understood that it serves at the direction of its investors. JER selected LaSalle when it was clear that a transfer of the European team was the investors’ preferred choice. JER believes LaSalle is the right choice for the investors and its former European employees.”
Susan Lloyd-Hurwitz, managing director Europe, added: “We look forward to serving the investors in the transferring JER Europe funds and delivering LaSalle’s high quality brand of performance and service.