Shelter Rock forms Japan JV – Exclusive

The New York-based real estate capital advisory firm has allied itself with a Tokyo-based partner to help connect Japanese investors with investment opportunities in Europe and North America.

Shelter Rock, a New York-based real estate capital advisory firm, has forged an alliance with Tokyo-based alternative investment advisory and placement firm, Matrix Japan, PERE has learned.

“We believe that Japanese institutional capital is increasingly interested in core and core-plus real estate located in Europe and North America,” said Shelter Rock managing partner Walter Stackler. “We are thrilled to partner with Matrix to help source best in class opportunities for these investors—whether they be funds, separate accounts or direct investments.”

“We have been seeing a marked increase in the interest in North American and European real estate from Japanese institutions”

– Jerrod Stelli

The firms are currently working together on a specific US mandate, but the partnership would allow Matrix to collaborate with Shelter Rock on any of the latter firm’s deals that would be of interest to Japanese investors, Stackler said.

The joint venture would help Matrix, which is led by chief executive Jerrod Stelli, to increase its real estate activity, while providing Shelter Rock with greater access to Japanese capital.

Japanese outbound real estate investment via indirect strategies, including through funds, is estimated total $15.3 billion in the next few years, according to commercial real estate services CBRE. This is significantly more than the $9.1 billion of direct outbound real estate investment in existing assets recorded between 2012 to 2016, the firm said.

“We have longstanding relationships and are in active dialogue with a range of Japanese institutional investors, including government entities, insurance companies, pensions, banks, trading companies and corporates,” said Stelli. “In addition to our capital raising activity in private equity, credit and infrastructure, we have been seeing a marked increase in the interest in North American and European real estate from Japanese institutions.”

Originally founded in 2004 as Matrix Ascent Partners, Matrix provides advisory and placement services across alternatives, both in terms of assisting Japanese institutional investors with allocating capital and helping Asian and Western investors to establish cross-border platforms in these asset classes.

The firm has a longstanding relationship with Brookfield Asset Management, for which it has raised capital for Brookfield’s real estate, infrastructure and private equity businesses. Matrix also has worked with London-based Cheyne Capital Management on its European real estate debt platform, which includes senior, mezzanine and mortgage-backed securities funds. The firm currently comprises six professionals, all of whom are Japanese nationals or Japanese speakers.

Shelter Rock was founded in 2014 by Stackler and currently has a 12-strong team. The partnership with Matrix represents the firm’s latest initiative to bolster its distribution outside North America. Last year, the firm hired Dominic Field, a former partner at Hodes Weill & Associates, to lead its capital raising efforts in Europe, and Thomas DeCoene, previously an executive at Brazilian investment bank Itau, to oversee efforts in Latin America, particularly with investors in Chile, Colombia, Peru and Brazil.