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Nuveen appoints Shusaku Watanabe as Head of Japan Real Estate
Watanabe has relocated to Japan from Singapore, where he was previously director of Asia Pacific capital markets, to assume his new role. He will lead the continued expansion of Nuveen's portfolio of Japanese assets, in addition to serving as fund manager for the Tokyo Multifamily Partnership launched in 2018.
"We look forward to having Shu join our highly capable team in Japan, where they can tap into his wealth of experience in managing institutional real estate investment strategies," Nick Evans, Nuveen's head of Asia Pacific Real Estate, said. "Japan is a key investment market for Nuveen Real Estate, and we see strong growth potential in this highly sophisticated market."
With more than 20 years of experience in the asset management industry, Watanabe was responsible for driving Nuveen's acquisition programme in Asia when he first joined the firm in 2016. In the same year, he completed Nuveen's debut investment in Japan with the purchase of a commercial building in Tokyo's Ginza district.
Since then, Watanabe has led numerous further acquisitions across the country, bringing the firm's total AUM across Japan to approximately US$1.2 billion, spanning several multifamily, logistics and commercial assets. Most recently these included the acquisition of two portfolios of multifamily properties in 2020 for c. $310 million and a 50 percent stake in a logistics asset located in Greater Tokyo in December 2019.
"Our real estate investment in Japan has grown over the last four years at a steady pace of about US$300m per annum., building up a resilient portfolio," Watanabe commented. "Going forward, we plan to maintain our growth rate by formulating investment theses and identifying opportunities beyond current market cycles, while being cognisant of the dynamic capital market conditions and accelerating changes in lifestyle."
Nuveen opened its first Japanese office in Tokyo in September 2018. The office currently offers both real estate capabilities and advisory services. Advisory services is led by Michinobu Suzuki, Head of Japan.
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