Singaporean group hires Qatar head

Pacific Star has recruited Knut Riesmeier from the global asset mangement division of insurer Munich Re to lead efforts in the region.

Singapore-based Pacific Star Group has appointed Knut Riesmeier as president of its Qatar operations.

Riesmeier, 53, was former global head of real estate at MEAG, the global asset management company of European insurer Munich Re Group. At the firm, he was responsible for the performance of real estate assets of the group worldwide as well as external investors, asset and property management.

Pacific Star said Riesmeier would grow the business and increase Pacific Star's funds raised from sovereign wealth funds, financial institutions and ultra high-net-worth individuals.

The firm currently has offices outside Singapore in Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Seoul, Tokyo, Sydney, Munich and New York and has been recruiting in some of those markets. This summer it hired former Korean pension head Kim Ho-Shik to sit on its advisory board and guide the firm as it enters the Korean market. At the same time, it has lost some high profile talent. Dealmaker Frank Khoo left recently to join Axa Real Estate Investment Managers as the French group's head of Asia. Earlier in the year, the former co-founder of the firm, Ethan Penner, joined CBRE Investors as an executive managing director.

Pacific Star manages sevral funds including the €1.2 billion ($1.6 billion) Asia Real Estate Income fund, the $600 million Baitak Asian Real Estate fund, which is a joint venture between Pacific Star and Kuwait Finance House, the €500 million HSH Asia Real Estate fund, and the $650 million Asian Real Estate Prime Development Fund which invests in prime development projects in key Asian cities.

The firm is also raising a $400m fund to invest in Vietnam and a $500 million opportunistic vehicle focused on Asian real estate companies in different parts of capital structures such as mezzanine financing and convertible bonds.