ASIA - AXA Real Estate Investment Managers (AXA REIM), the global property arm of French financial services group AXA, has opened an Asian headquarters in Singapore as the springboard for moves into India and Japan.

Only having entered the Asian real estate market in early 2007, officials at AXA REIM claim the Singapore office will help it further enhance its presence in the region, to benefit from the immense opportunities it believes Asia offers.

"Within an 18-month period, since making a strategic move into Asia, we have already invested nearly 25% of the €1.4bn already committed by our clients in the region," said Pierre Vaquier, adding the move into Asia.

"Asia is becoming a strategic destination for real-estate investors," added Vaquier.

Spearheading the Asian operation is Frank Khoo, who joined AXA REIM from Pacific Star Fund Management, where he was senor vice president.

Reporting directly to Vaquier, Khoo will co-ordinate the firm's investment and asset management operations in the region, part of which is to include the development of investment platforms in India and Japan and the foundation of a local presence in other Asian countries which AXA REIM considers essential to its expansion in Asia.