Russell Investments loses Asia director Lamb

Martin Lamb switches from advisor to principal in a bid to capitalise on distressed debt and other opportunistic investments in Florida and other parts of southwest US.

Martin Lamb, the director at Russell Investments responsible for the investor and advisor’s private fund research and investment activities in Asia, has resigned from the firm to lead his own real estate fund based in Florida.

Trust Capital Group is a boutique private equity real estate firm which Lamb has founded to invest in distressed debt and opportunistic commercial real estate. The firm will have a particular focus on America’s south-western markets.

Lamb’s move to Florida brings the curtain down on a four year spell at Russell, one of the world’s largest investment houses with more than $150 billion of assets under management, $8 billion of which are real estate investments. He joined the firm in 2008, originally working in its Singapore office, before relocating to Sydney.

While at Russell, Lamb advised the firm’s clients, predominantly made up of banks, insurance companies, investment advisors, defined benefit and defined contribution plans, endowments, foundations and sovereign wealth funds, on their real estate activities in Asia. In addition to managing a huge investment portfolio, the firm also advises on more than $775 billion of assets.

Lamb’s 25-year career in real estate also includes a four year spell in charge of the Shanghai office of a shopping centre development joint venture with Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing (MSREI) called Gerrity International. Before that Lamb was a managing director at AIG Global Real and he also used to work for junior capital lender Northstar Capital Partners as well as MSREI itself.

Lamb was unavailble for comment when approached but a Russell spokesman said responsibility for the group's Asia real estate activties was now in the hands of John Mancuso, its Europe director, and Samantha Steele, senior analyst based in Sydney. She said: “We have a strong team in place.”