PropertyMatch surpasses 1 billion Eur of trades

PropertyMatch, the secondary marketplace for units in unlisted real estate funds across Europe, has transacted over €1 billion of trades following a flurry of activity in Q1 2012. A record 48 trades worth over €270 million were facilitated via the platform in the first quarter of this year, which is a 240 per cent increase compared with the same period in 2011 and equivalent to the total volume of trades undertaken by the platform in its first year of operation.

The milestone was crossed with two separate trades agreed, both in over €50 million. The UK recorded the highest number of trades in Q1 and accounted for two-thirds of the total trading volume. In the quarter, continental European funds accounted for a third of trading volume, following PropertyMatch's expansion into the region just over a year ago, emphasizing the positive response to the exchange beyond the UK.

The consistent rise in volumes highlights increasing investor demand for transparency, including the desire for clarity on current fund unit pricing, which was not previously available and led to lessening confidence in the unlisted real estate funds space. PropertyMatch was built to address these concerns and is the first system to provide the market with a trading environment like a stock exchange, where significant fund level data and pricing history can be freely accessed. By providing this portal, confidence in the unlisted funds industry has grown and institutional investors, who have not previously been known to seek exposure to these vehicles, have begun to buy units in the instruments.

Paul Robinson, Executive Director, Real Estate Finance, CBRE, said:

"We are delighted to have broken through the billion Euro milestone. Transparency and liquidity are two sides of the same coin – both driving confidence and greater interest in the marketplace. We have consistently seen strong growth in PropertyMatch volumes since its launch, which indicates that there is appetite in the market for transparency to drive liquidity and the crisis merely brought this demand into relief. The very fact that PropertyMatch provides market transparency via real time pricing, a full trading history and an unprecedented amount of fund level data not available elsewhere in one place has meant that investors and funds have quickly gravitated towards the platform.”

Michael Levi, Head of Indirect Property at GFI Group, added:

“PropertyMatch is fast becoming the virtual marketplace for secondary funds. Transparency is no longer an afterthought but is demanded by investors. The UK is the most advanced market in this respect, however continental Europe is making headway. The reception we have had on the Continent proves the desire for the transparency and market efficiency that PropertyMatch provides is there. Furthermore, as we approach the formal adoption of Solvency II, we have no doubt clear market pricing will become increasingly important region-wide. And we expect both the volume and number of trades to continue in an upward trajectory.”

Over 140 funds, including 50 European funds, now benefit from visible pricing via PropertyMatch, over twice the number listed this time last year. These now include pan-European, and a number of specialist funds specifically focused on France, Germany, Por