LaSalle to invest US$3.3 bil in Japan

TOKYO: US real estate firm LaSalle Investment Management plans to invest ¥300 billion (RM10.8 billion) in Japanese property over the next 12 months, the head of its Japan arm said on Tuesday, June 15.

LaSalle Investment Management, a unit of property services firm Jones Lang LaSalle, restarted buying Japanese assets late last year, sensing opportunity in a property market hit hard by the global credit crunch.

"Property prices in Japan have fallen to an appropriate level at which we can expect a sufficient return in the long term," Yasuo Nakashima, chief executive officer of LaSalle's Japan arm, said in an interview for the Reuters Global Real Estate and Infrastructure Summit.

"Asset prices may fall further, but we are sure that they would go up to an adequate level after dropping temporarily."

While the recovery in the world's second-largest real estate market has been slower than other markets in Asia, there are more distressed assets in Japan at cheaper prices, Nakashima said.

Nakashima said his firm was looking at various assets, including offices and warehouses.

Fresh investment in Japan this year is likely to reach US$2.2 billion, six times the level in 2009 and will likely total US$3.3 billion over the next 12 months, he said.

LaSalle has US$38.3 billion in assets under management globally. – Reuters

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