SINGAPORE (May 22): Total real estate assets under management (AUM) for 2018 rose 12% to US$3.2 trillion ($4.4 trillion) from US$2.8 trillion in 2017, according to this year’s ANREV/INREV/NCREIF Fund Manager Survey.

This year’s total global AUM growth was led by the largest contributor Blackstone Group as the firm made history by breaching the US$200 billion mark, followed by Brookfield Asset Management which saw a 20.5% y-o-y surge in total real estate AUM to US$187.3 billion.

Both fund managers are also said to be in the midst of a bidding war for Anbang Insurance Group Co.’s portfolio of 15 luxury hotels.

In a press release on Thursday, ANREV (Asian Association for Investors in Non-Listed Real Estate Vehicles) notes that Asia Pacific strategies have also made headway over the last year as they contributed to 18.4% of total global real estate AUM for 2018, up from 16.9% reported the year before.

The regional growth was led by CapitaLand Limited with US$55.9 billion in real estate AUM, followed by Global Logistic Properties and Mapletree Investments with US$36.3 billion and US$28.3 billion, respectively.

Across all regional strategies, non-listed real estate vehicles – namely funds, separate accounts, joint ventures (JVs), club deals, funds of funds, and debt products – notably represent a significant portion of total AUM. 

These accounted for 84% or some US$2.7 trillion of the US$3.2 trillion total AUM for 2018 with nearly half comprising funds (46.5%), and listed and other real estate strategies making up 10.9% and 5.1%, respectively.

“The surge in total real estate AUM generally, and among specific managers, is further evidence of real estate’s important diversification role, with the increase in Asia Pacific’s share of total real estate assets under management a reflection of this trend,” commented Amélie Delaunay, ANREV Director of Research and Professional Standards.

“It is clear from the findings that non-listed real estate funds are the vehicle of choice for investors looking to gain exposure to this important asset class,” she adds.