LaSalle Investment Management has hired Paul Guest as its new Asia-Pacific head of research and strategy to replace Kenneth Tsang, who had been in the post since February 2009.
Guest will be based in Singapore and report to Jacques Gordon, international director of investment strategy and research based in Chicago, and Mark Gabbay, LaSalle’s Hong Kong-based chief investment officer for Asia.
Guest is joining from real-estate services firm Jones Lang LaSalle, where he was head of Europe, Middle East and Africa research, and before that was director of UK research. Prior to that, he was the chief European economist at rating agency Moody’s Investors Service.
He will advise on all LaSalle IM funds in Asia-Pacific, including the LaSalle Asia Opportunity funds, the LaSalle Asia Recovery Fund, the LaSalle Japan Logistics funds and the Asia Property Fund.
AsianInvestor could not ascertain Tsang's destination by press time. Before joining LaSalle IM, he had also worked in Asia for ING Real Estate Investment Management, Jones Lang LaSalle and CBRE.
LaSalle IM currently manages about $8 billion in assets in Asia-Pacific and $45 billion globally. Since the crisis, its principal theme in Asia has been towards risk capital, developing and stabilising an acquired property, creating real estate investments that appeal to core investors.
LaSalle has been particularly active in Singapore, where it developed the Ibis Bencoolen Hotel and the Crowne Plaza at Changi airport, both of which it has now sold on to investors. During a recent conversation with Andrew Heithersay, international director of LaSalle IM, he highlighted logistics properties in Singapore as offering some interesting opportunities in the near term.
In China, LaSalle has been looking to partner with top-tier residential developers in selected second-tier cities. It also foresees double-digit growth in Hong Kong retail, but observes that it is a difficult market, as the best quality space and shopping malls are tightly controlled, so it may look to retail podiums outside of the prime areas.