Grosvenor, the privately-owned international property group, announced today that Nicholas (‘Nick’) Loup, Chief Executive of Grosvenor Asia Pacific, has decided to move on from the firm in March 2015. Benjamin (‘Ben’) Cha has been appointed to succeed him.
Ben will join Grosvenor on 29 September 2014 as Managing Director, Grosvenor Asia Pacific, and will take up the role of Chief Executive, Grosvenor Asia Pacific, on 31 March 2015. Nick’s decision to move on brings to a close a remarkable 25 year career with Grosvenor, with 20 years dedicated to the Asia Pacific region and, previously, five years with the London headquarters. He will be joining the board of a UK property company with interests in Europe and aspirations in Asia.
Under Nick’s tenure, the Asian business was established in Hong Kong in 1994; operations have since expanded to Tokyo and Shanghai. Grosvenor Asia Pacific has garnered a reputation for being a long-term investor and developer in Asia by growing a diversified portfolio of core investments and building an expanding programme of award-winning luxury residential developments in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo carrying Grosvenor and related names - such as Grosvenor, Westminster and Belgravia - which have been ground-breaking in their approach to design and quality. The company has also fostered strong relationships with local partners, co-investors and banks in each of the markets in which it operates – most recently closing a co-investment partnership vehicle with two private investors to invest in luxury residential value-add and development opportunities and Grade B offices in the central Tokyo area within the next 18 months.
“We have achieved our goal of operating as a local property company in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo, and are in the fortunate position of working with first-class partners. In Asia, Grosvenor is well placed to grow its activities through Grosvenor-branded residential developments and commercial developments for medium or long-term ownership,”
Mark Preston, Grosvenor Chief Executive, said:
“I am enormously grateful to Nick Loup for his leadership and commitment over the past two decades, which have been critical to our success in Asia. I am delighted that in Ben Cha we have appointed such an excellent successor and I look forward to working with him. We will remain fully committed to the Asia Pacific region. By leveraging on our past achievements and the strong partnerships we have forged throughout the region, we are in a solid position to continue to expand our Asian presence.”
Ben Cha commented:
“I am absolutely delighted to be joining Grosvenor. I feel privileged to be succeeding Nick and am thrilled to join Mark and the team. It is a dynamic time for each market in Asia where Grosvenor has a presence. With its long standing commitment to the region, partnerships and unique strategies I am confident in Grosvenor’s ability to navigate the markets and expand on its successes. I look forward to being part of this process.”
Ben was previously with UBS Global Asset Management as Managing Director, Head of Global Real Estate Greater China. Prior to UBS, he was with HKR International Limited, a Hong Kong based developer, for eleven years, latterly as an Executive Director and Head of its Asia Pacific Business Unit; earlier in his career he was with the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group. Ben will spend half of a six month handover period in London and half in Asia, where he will be based in Hong Kong.
The Board of Grosvenor Asia Pacific is chaired by Keith Kerr. Non-Executive Directors are Kensuke Hotta, Michael Lee, Norman Lyle and, from Grosvenor Group Limited, Mark Preston, Group CEO, and Nick Scarles, Group FD. Executive Directors are Nicholas Loup; Koshiro Hiroi, Managing Director Development (Asia Pacific), and Chief Representative Japan; Yu Yang, Managing Director Investment (Greater China); and Ian Mair, Regional Finance Director. It has offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo, and a staff of 53.
For more information contact:
Naomi Curtis/Sorrel Basher, Press Office
020 7312 6479/6101
Notes to Editors
Grosvenor Group Limited (Grosvenor)
Grosvenor is a privately-owned property group with offices in 17 of the world's most dynamic cities. We have regional investment & development businesses in Britain & Ireland, the Americas and Asia Pacific. Our international fund management business operates across all these markets, with a particular focus in Europe. We also have indirect investments, managed centrally within the Holding Company. The Board of Directors comprises six Non-Executive Directors (Lesley Knox, Chairman; Michael McLintock, Jeremy Newsum, Chris Pratt, Domenico Siniscalco and Jeffrey Weingarten) and two Executive Directors (Mark Preston and Nick Scarles, Group CEO and Group FD respectively). Philip Dilley joins the Board on 10 November 2014. Biographies are available here.
Grosvenor Asia Pacific
Grosvenor’s direct proprietary investments in property in Asia are handled through Grosvenor Asia Pacific (‘GAP’). The business is positioning itself for the long term and has three distinct aims. First, it is building a luxury residential brand under the Grosvenor banner, differentiated by the quality of its design and exceptional finishes; secondly, it is growing a diversified portfolio of core investments in the residential and office sectors; and thirdly, looking further ahead, it is seeking to develop best –in-class buildings in the central business districts of Shanghai and Hong Kong as high-quality long-term investments through co-investment partnerships. In 2013 Grosvenor Asia Pacific had revenue profit of HK$54.8m, total return of 5.4% and assets under management of HK$10.8bn. In 2013 it accounted for 10% of Grosvenor Group Limited’s Shareholders’ Funds; the long term capital allocation for Asia Pacific is 10-20%.
2014 marks Grosvenor’s 20th anniversary operating in the Asia Pacific region and will see the launch of a new residential development partnership in Japan which will bring a number of new projects into the pipeline. Highlights of the last twenty years include the completion of award-winning luxury residential developments with local partners in Hong Kong (Grosvenor Place, Repulse Bay; The Westminster Terrace, Hong Kong) and Tokyo (Grosvenor Place, Kamizono-cho, Tokyo; Joint ventures with institutional investors, sovereign wealth funds and family offices to invest in core and value-add projects; and the foundation of the Asian Association for Investors in Non-listed Real Estate Vehicle (ANREV).
Nick established Grosvenor’s operations in Asia Pacific in 1994. Nick was appointed to the Grosvenor Group board in July 2008 and is a member of Grosvenor’s Group Executive Committee. Outside Grosvenor, Nick is a General Committee member of the British Chamber of Commerce and a Director of the Spinal Cord Injury Fund. He is also Chairman of the Asian Association for Investors in Non-Listed Real Estate Vehicles Limited (ANREV), of which he is a founder member; Vice Chairman of the Council of China’s Foreign Trade; and a member of the World Economic Forum’s Fiscal Sustainability Global Agenda Council (GAC).
Prior to arriving in Asia, Nick had been a Director of Trafalgar House Developments, with responsibility for developments in London’s West End. Previously, Nick has been a Director of several companies, including Asia Standard International Group Limited, a Hong Kong listed property company; Bridge Capital, a private equity firm in Delhi; and PCD, a department store company in China. He was also a member of the Asia Pacific acquisitions committee of the Tate.
Ben joins Grosvenor from UBS Global Asset Management where he was Managing Director, Head of Global Real Estate, Greater China and co-CEO of UBS/Gemdale, a UBS joint venture real estate private equity platform in China. Ben was also a member of the UBS Global Real Estate Asia Pacific Management Committee and Investment Committee. Prior to joining UBS in 2013 Ben was with HKR International, a Hong Kong based developer, from 2002-2013, ultimately as Executive Director, Head of HKR Asia Pacific and a Board Member. While with HKR Ben was involved with principal investment and execution of development projects in China, Japan, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia, establishment of various joint ventures and a sovereign wealth fund platform. Earlier in his career Ben was in the Group Development function of Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group. Ben has a Masters in Business Administration from Stanford University and a Bachelor of Arts in International Politics and Economics from Middlebury College, USA. Ben is a member of the Zhejiang Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and serves on the board of the Asia Art Archive.