German pensions giant BVK adds CBRE GI to roster

CBRE Global Investors has joined the list of property investment advisers to BVK, Germany’s largest public pension group.

BVK (Bayerische Versorgung- skammer) appointed LaSalle Investment Management earlier this year after a search last year for a manager to handle a €500m global direct property mandate.

BVK subsequently decided to double the mandate to €1bn and has awarded a second, €500m mandate to CBRE GI, runner up in bidding for the original mandate.

Both advisers will build global portfolios for BVK across property types, geographic areas, capital structures and risk profiles, but LaSalle’s initial focus has been on core investments in Japan, Australia, Canada and the US.

It is CBRE GI’s first global separate account and will be overseen by John Ozinga, who was appointed to build up the firm’s pan-European separate accounts business last March.

LaSalle expects to make two investments for BVK by the end of the year, said Claus Thomas, international director. It is targeting lot sizes between €30m and €100m and a 5% return.

Bavarian-based BVK has more than €60bn in assets under management for self- employed professionals in 12 occupational pension schemes.

The pension fund has direct real estate mandates with four other managers. Pramerica and Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management (formerly RREEF) have global mandates and each has invested more than €1bn.

GLL and Invesco Real Estate invest in Europe for BVK. Invesco has managed the core iii-BVK Europa Immobilien Spezialfond since 2000 and “continues to look for new core pan-European opportunities”, a spokeswoman said. UBS has an indirect property mandate picking funds in emerging markets.

…and injects debt for Frankfurt tower 

Pensions group BVK is investing in one of Frankfurt’s landmark office towers through debt rather than equity.

Bayerische Versorgungskammer has lent €300m, at a 60% loan-to-value ratio, to the three owners of Tower 185. The investment is believed to yield around 3% for BVK investors.

BVK made a “long-term real estate loan”, said law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, which advised developer and part-owner, Austrian-listed CA Immobillien.

The loan replaces shorter-term financing from a syndicate  put together by Eurohypo, now Hypothekenbank Frankfurt.

CA Immo has agreed to sell two-thirds of Tower 185, which is Germany’s fourth tallest tower, completed last January, to two German pension funds.

BVK financed IVG’s purchase of Frankfurt’s Silberturm in 2011. German Law firm Noerr advised BVK.