LaSalle Investment Management has been awarded a £750 million ($1.24 billion; €944 million) mandate from the Greater Manchester Pension Fund (GMPF), the UK’s largest local authority pension. The mandate, which will invest in commercial property throughout the country, is one of the largest in UK real estate investment management in recent years, according to a release from LaSalle.
“We are absolutely delighted to have been chosen to manage this major portfolio,” said Alan Tripp, LaSalle’s UK managing director, in a statement. “We look forward to a successful partnership ahead, building on LaSalle’s track record in the UK with its existing relative-return mandates.”
Through the mandate, LaSalle will manage GMPF’s existing portfolio as well as target new assets of up to £75 million each. The mandate has the potential to increase up to £1 billion over time, according to Concillor Quinn, the leader of Tameside Council and chair of GMPF.
In November 2013, GMPF decided to outsource its property management activities and began the search process for a real estate manager. At the time, the pension stated that it did not have the internal resources to increase and develop its portfolio, which represents 6 percent to 7 percent of the £12.6 billion pension. GMPF is aiming to increase its target real estate allocation in the medium term to 10 percent.
The news represents the second billion-dollar European mandate that LaSalle has won in the past week. On August 21, the investment manager announced that it had been awarded $1 billion in equity by an undisclosed European institutional investor to invest in US real estate. Although LaSalle declined to name the investor, PERE understands that the investor is Swiss domiciled.