EDITOR'S LETTER: Reputations

Warren Buffet has a few famous sayings, but a personal favourite attributed to him is: “Lose money for my firm, and I will be understanding; lose a shred of reputation for the firm, and I will be ruthless.” 

Just as in the world of mainstream financial investing, reputation is everything in private equity real estate. In the coming year, we likely will see whose rep has been enhanced and whose has been shredded by past and current decisions, judging from this month’s issue.

As Erik Kolb explains in his commentary on page 10, LaSalle Investment Management, Brookfield Asset Management and Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing (MSREI) are just some of the top names that have big calls to make and important tests to face as they wrestle with decisions over the fate of existing vehicles. Meanwhile, Jonathan Brasse delves further into the complex situation at MSREI in a special report starting on page 6.
Of course, the year-end already has been reputation-enhancing for some, such as UBS, which scored an ego-boosting triumph in Europe last month (see page 18). Equally, someone is going to boost their standing next year when one of France’s most forward-thinking pension plans invites managers to pitch for a mandate to buy real estate across the region (see page 20).

Surely, out of chaos comes the chance to excel, and certainly one thing that has become clear already is that nowadays pretty much everything is a special situation. So I recommend digesting James Comtois’ overview on what ‘special situations’ mean to fund managers and their investors today, beginning on page 52. Here’s a clue: it means whatever you want it to mean.

Speaking of special situations, Ireland is one all its own, which is why PERE took time out to visit Dublin  one year after it received an €85 billion bailout. Starting on page 34, we tell the untold story of how general partners around the world have a part to play in rebooting Ireland’s crashed economy.

As Barry Sternlicht said in New York recently, we’re in this really violent, turbulent, volatile time, in which one week it’s the end of the world, and the next week everything is going to be fine (see page 32). As a result, we are looking forward to charting the reactions to that madness from general partners and limited partners alike.
One final note: what better way to boost your rep than by winning one of this year’s Global PERE Awards? Voting begins later this month on our website, perenews.com, so keep an eye open for it.
Happy end of the year, and we look forward to seeing you in 2012.

Enjoy the issue,

Robin Marriott
Editor, PERE