EDITOR'S LETTER: In with the new

Welcome to the first issue of PERE for 2011.

In the spirit of “out with the old and in with the new”, you may have noticed that we have a new look, both inside and out. Our new cover design makes a bold statement about who we are and what we are offering our readers, while the inside of the magazine has been refined to make the presentation cleaner and easier to read.

This design overhaul is the result of a brand audit that PEI – our parent company – completed in November, and is just the first exciting change we have planned for our subscribers. Later this year, we will launch a new, fully integrated online platform that gives you more control over the way in which you read the intelligence we provide.

Speaking of intelligence, this month’s issue is loaded with it. The first is an update on the sale of ING REIM, which is slated to be acquired by CBRE Investors. Starting on p. 6, Robin Marriott examines the firm set to become the world’s largest real estate platform and the challenges it faces in completing the transaction.

Next up, Jonathan Brasse takes a look at the next potential acquisition target for private equity players, Centro Properties Group. The Australian company opened its doors to a formal competitive process last year and, in doing so, has instigated what could be one of the largest unravelings of a real estate company in a generation, given its numerous complex ownership structures. Read all about it, starting on p. 10.

Lastly, Robin Marriott takes a look at distressed real estate in Spain. The country’s macroeconomic problems have put off many real estate investors, and the lack of a true distressed market hasn’t helped opportunity funds put capital to work either. Still, some hardy firms have managed to find attractive situations to invest in, and we talk to them, beginning on p. 34.

Beyond those features, the PERE team brings you a host of GP and LP insights, including AXA’s plans for the US, ATP’s strategy for its new €700 million allocation and APG’s search for partners in Asia.

Overall, this is a great edition of PERE, and I look forward to hearing your feedback on the changes we have made.

Enjoy the issue,

Erik Kolb
Senior Editor, Real Estate
PERE and PERENews.com