REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY

Ascot Corp., an Associate of Ping An Group, has Started a Real Estate Fund Management Business in Japan

Ascot Corp. | May 09, 2022

Real Estate Fund Management
Ascot Corp. has formed the first private fund through a joint venture with global institutional investors to invest in MF residential, senior living facilities, and student housing in the Tokyo metropolitan area.

  • Main Investment Properties of the Fund
"ASTILE" is MF residential brand winning the Good Design Award twice last year, and "FARE" is the brand winning the Award seven times for the five consecutive years.

*The Good Design Award is the only comprehensive design evaluation and recommendation system in Japan that covers a wide range of fields from industrial products to business models and event activities.

  • Overview of the Fund and Strategy
The investment targets of the Fund are MF residential, senior living facilities, and student housing, and their locations are limited to the Tokyo metropolitan area where are expected to provide stable cash flows with little impact from the Covid-19 pandemic and high liquidity on exit, and consequently stable investment results. Furthermore, the investment risks can be identified within the limited scope and in a quantitative manner due to the predefined properties.

The portfolio of the Fund No. 1 comprises of 9 properties, mainly MF residential developed by Ascot (including ASTILE Harajuku, and ASTILE Nishi-Shinjuku II etc.). In the near future, Ascot plans to expand the scope of its fund in collaboration with global institutional investors by acquiring MF residential, senior living facilities, and student housings from external developers and funds, in addition to properties developed by Ascot. Ascot manages these properties as the asset manager of the Fund.

  • The Growth Strategy of Real Estate Fund Business Department
The Real Estate Fund Business Department, established in 2021, is a new business unit of Ascot that leverages the company's design and quality property development capabilities cultivated over the past 20 years since Ascot's founding in 1999, as well as its domestic and international network. As one of the key pillars of our mid-term growth strategy, we aim to further expand our business by forming joint venture funds with domestic and foreign investors and new private funds, as well as by entering the REIT and other businesses.

In addition to MF residential and offices, which are our strengths, we will target a wide range of asset classes, including logistics, hotels, senior housing, data centers, etc. Furthermore, we are considering entering some asset classes from the development stage.

The Fund Business Department will contribute to the growth of the real estate investment market by continuously providing optimal solutions and quality investment opportunities to a wide range of investors while expanding total assets under management.

  • Background
Under the circumstances of limited investment opportunities under the low interest rate policy and globalization trend of investment, there has been a shift in allocations from traditional assets such as listed stocks and bonds to alternative investments, with real estate investment in particular gaining prominence worldwide over the past few years.

As the global asset allocation strategy, a certain percentage has been shifted to Asia, and, in comparison to other Asian countries, investment in Japanese real estate has been allocated to a significant degree in terms of core investment. The primary factor is that Japan's low interest rate policy has ensured a relatively large yield gap. Secondly, Japan, centered on Tokyo, has a considerable market size which provides high liquidity on exit. In addition, the infrastructure for investment, such as legal, accounting, and taxation is very stable. Therefore, stable returns are expected to be secured. Consequently, the investment needs and flow of funds from global investors, especially institutional investors, to Japanese real estate have continued even with the COVID-19 pandemic, and the recent depreciation of Japanese yen has also attracted investors' attention to Japanese real estate.

The asset classes receiving great attention are logistics and MF residential. Since Ascot has advantage in longstanding residential development business, the first fund focused on residential properties.

  • Comments by Takeshi Nakabayashi, President of Ping An Japan Investment Co, Ltd.
Ascot Corp. is the first real estate company in Japan invested by Ping An Group. We are fascinated by Ascot's excellent development track record backed by its ability to plan and deliver high value-added residential and office properties. We have high expectations for the growth of Ascot's new global business, including the real estate fund management business just launched, the development of logistics facilities, and integrated services from real estate brokerage to property management for global investors.

About Ascot Corp.
Ascot is a global comprehensive real estate service provider targeting Tokyo metropolitan area. The business includes the development of the MF residential and logistics, fund management, real estate brokerage for global investors, and property management leveraged by its design and high-quality property development capabilities as well as its domestic and international network. Its design and development capabilities cultivated over the past 20 years are highly recognized, as the track record of winning the Good Design Award 14 times in total shows. Through Digital Transformation, Ascot aims to provide quality real estate services in line with global standards by enhancing customer contact and creating new revenue models.

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