Alignment is key for asset management

Richard-Croft-THUMBProperty Asset Management Summit 2016: To successfully manage capital in asset management and achieve growth you need to ensure that you align your interests with those of your investors, delegates heard at Estates Gazette’s Property Asset Management Summit this morning.

Richard Croft, chief executive of M7 Real Estate, said: “The way that we manage capital is to make sure that our alignment of interest is in the interest of our partners. The key thing is to convince people that you are aligned with them and the mistake is to take assets under management without doing this.”

It is equally important to focus your attention and skill set to a particular asset class in order to have a clear strategy for your assets and investors.

Croft added: “It is important that you do what you do because you are good at it and you don’t stretch too far out. Then you become all things to men and you don’t do anything that well.”

John Maddison, partner at Quadrant Estates, said: “You have to differentiate yourself from the world of investment agency and if you have a partner you need to be clear that your plans match theirs.”

Extending understanding of assets to the tenants of the buildings is also key to successful asset management. This enables asset manages to adapt to their occupiers’ needs and achieve rental growth, and is particularly important for the office sector.

Susana Clarke, head of asset services, Spain, at Cushman & Wakefield, said: “We have to really understand the occupiers of the buildings and their changing requirements. They are not paying for the sake of it, it is all about who lives and works in the buildings.”

Beyond understanding and alignment of interest, it is also important to remember that property asset management is also build on relationships and trust.

Maddison said: “Property is a people business and you must never forget that the way to get an investor over the line is based on trust and a good relationship.”

Matt Kelly, investment director at Anglezark, said: “When you meet people you have to totally understand what their objectives are and how you are going to invest their money.”

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