Macquarie targets $2.5bn for global real estate fund

The Australian firm also plans to make new hires to bolster its third-party capital management and fundraising capabilities in opportunistic real estate.

Australia’s Macquarie Asset Management is currently in the market with a global real estate fund, which will be a key part of its broader plan to grow its fundraising and investment capabilities in opportunistic real estate, PERE has learned.

The firm is understood to be targeting around $2.5 billion for its first opportunistic global real estate fund, which reached a first close in early 2022, according to two PERE market sources. Further details on the fund were not available at press time.

Meanwhile, PERE can reveal that the firm’s debut $A1.1 billion ($756 million; €729 million) Asia-Pacific opportunistic real estate fund – its first vehicle in the higher-risk, higher-return strategy – has been 90 percent deployed. Closed in June 2021, the vehicle invests in both real estate platforms and hard assets with a focus on developed markets in Asia Pacific. However, Macquarie is understood to be focusing on raising and investing the global real estate fund rather than launching a new Asia-Pacific property vehicle.

Macquarie declined to comment on its fundraising and investment activities.

To fuel its third-party capital management and fundraising capabilities in opportunistic real estate, the firm plans to hire in Singapore and Japan, according to one of the two sources. Last year, Macquarie appointed former CLSA Real Estate executives – managing director Angel Li and head of Japan Real Estate Fund Ryuta Ueda – to lead its real estate investments in Asia.

Jelte Bakker, head of Asia-Pacific real estate at Macquarie Asset Management, told PERE in a previous interview that it is a natural progression for Macquarie to raise a fund to invest in opportunistic real estate. Macquarie Capital, the investment advisory arm of the bank, first invested in opportunistic real estate more than 10 years ago with its own balance sheet capital and had previously raised opportunistic real estate capital on a non-discretionary basis, according to a PERE report. In 2019, the group moved the opportunistic real estate team from Macquarie Capital to Macquarie Asset Management to provide third-party investors access to the investment strategy.

The Australian firm is ramping up hiring for its opportunistic real estate team following several senior departures in the past two years. In June 2021, the firm’s former senior managing director and real estate veteran Andrew Taylor stepped down from his role after spending 17 years at the Australian firm, according to a PERE report. In December 2021, former senior vice-president Ryan Li also left to join infrastructure specialist Stonepeak as a principal, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Li’s departure to Stonepeak followed that of former managing director Michael Chan, who joined the firm in 2020 to lead its fundraising and investment efforts in Asia-Pacific. Chan previously spent 15 years at Macquarie working as senior managing director in MIRA Real Estate and head of Asia for Macquarie Capital’s real estate investments team.