Thursday, March 11, 2010

Henderson launches property equity funds in China

Henderson Global Investors, an independent asset manager with US$93.8 billion of assets under management at end-2009, is introducing a suite of property equity funds in China.

The Henderson Horizon Global Property Equities Fund, Henderson Horizon Asia-Pacific Property Equities Fund and Henderson Horizon Pan European Property Equities Fund will be distributed exclusively by Citibank China.

Henderson said the funds will invest in real estate investment trusts (Reits) and commercial property stocks, with strong emphasis on cash flow growth, sustainable dividend yields from rental leases and quality management.

Alexander Henderson, managing director of Henderson in Asia, said there is a growing appetite for property investment among Asians.

Henderson had about US$16.7 billion of property assets under management on Dec 31, 2009. The asset manager has 200 people worldwide who focus on property, covering all aspects from asset management to market forecasting.

Frankie Lee, head of property equities, Asia, said: ‘For Asia, we expect property to continue its growth in 2010, and Asian developers and landlords should continue to outperform their Western counterparts.

‘Equity capital is also looking to migrate into the region in the form of direct real estate and private equity funds. It is this healthy capital base, combined with the strong GDP outlook of all countries in the region, that should continue to drive the outperformance of Asian real estate in 2010.’

Mr Lee, based in Singapore, manages the Henderson Horizon Asia-Pacific Property Equities Fund.

On the fund’s strategy, he said: ‘A theme we remain excited about is growth in office rents and capital values, especially in the mature financial centres of Hong Kong and Singapore. The leasing environment has been improving incrementally on the back of stronger job growth expectations, and supply of prime Grade A offices in core business districts remains moderate.’

He also identified Japan’s commercial market as one with plenty of potential for a strong recovery. ‘The market is still focused on current weakness in occupancies and hence valuations of office developers remain attractive,’ he said.

Source: Business Times, 11 Mar 2010

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