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Tishman Speyer makes foray into Shenzhen

The developer-cum-fund manager has entered the southern Chinese city with a mega mixed-use development project in partnership with technology company Lenovo

The New York-based developer and fund manager Tishman Speyer has made its first investment in the Chinese city of Shenzhen with the launch of a mixed-use development project.

The firm has set up a joint venture partnership with the global technology company Lenovo to develop a 2,246,428 square foot mixed use project in the city that reportedly is valued at RMB 9 billion (€1.21 billion; $1.35 billion).

The development in the central business district of the southern Chinese city, one of the first special economic zones to be set up in the country, will entail the creation of a large office space along with retail and cultural area, the firm said in a statement. A large portion of the office space would be serving as the new headquarters for Lenovo’s international business units once the project is completed by 2020.

“This landmark partnership with Lenovo, a world-class business, further establishes our presence in China and has been possible because of our deep knowledge and expertise in the local market combined with our ability to access major global investors,” said Rob Speyer, president and chief executive officer of Tishman Speyer. “Through this dynamic mixed-use development we will further activate the Houhai central business district of Shenzhen, providing the office space and amenities that local workers and residents want.”

The firm has been investing in China via its opportunistic private equity real estate funds. According to news reports the firm has launched three China-focused vehicles so far. In 2012 the firm raised its first RMB-denominated vehicle, attracting RMB 1.2 billion in equity commitments from Chinese investors. The fund corpus was invested in the development of two towers totaling 1.23 million square feet in Suzhou, as per a company statement. This was preceded by a US-dollar denominated China fund that closed on $884 million in 2008.

Globally, Tishman Speyer oversees a $78.2 billion portfolio spread over 152 million square feet of assets across the US, Europe, Latin America and Asia.