ARA Asset Management Limited (ARA) has increased its strategic stake in Kenedix, Inc. to 30%, up from 20.27% previously.
ARA had earlier supported the privatisation of Kenedix via a buyout led by Sumitomo Mitsui Finance and Leasing Company (SMFL), part of the Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation Group (SMBC).
Kenedix was delisted from the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange on 17 March 2021. ARA first bought into Kenedix in 2017, and was up to the time of privatisation, its single largest shareholder.
Established in 1995, Kenedix is Japan’s largest independent real estate asset management group with JPY2.3 trillion (US$21 billion) in assets under management as at 31 December 2020.
The Kenedix Group’s diversified funds management business includes three publicly-listed REITs and one private REIT, over 50 private real estate funds and a growing crowdfunding business.
ARA sees complementary strengths in Kenedix’s well-established funds management platform. ARA, along with SMBC Group, views the privatisation as an opportunity to grow Kenedix’s thriving REITs and private funds business, enhance the fund manager’s access to credit and other fundraising, and expand its business into new growth areas.
Mr Masaki Tachibana, President of SMFL, said: “We are pleased to have ARA’s support in the successful privatisation of Kenedix. This important milestone marks the start of our long-term strategic partnership, as we work together to mutually support our growth strategies in Asia.”
Mr Moses Song, Group CEO of ARA, said: “We are pleased to have partnered with SMFL in this strategic investment. Kenedix is led by a best-in-class management team and we see tremendous potential in terms of synergistic growth opportunities for both our businesses.”
Mr Taisuke Miyajima, President and CEO of Kenedix, said: “The investment from both SMFL and ARA demonstrates their confidence in Kenedix’s solid track record and is a strong endorsement of our future growth potential. We look forward to leveraging our shareholders’ strong capital base and extensive network to strengthen and grow our real estate funds management platform.”
Morgan Stanley Asia (Singapore) Pte. acted as ARA’s exclusive financial adviser on this transaction.