GLOBAL – US investment manager BlackRock has bought private equity real estate firm MGPA and is combining joint operations to form a $23.5bn (€17.3bn) global property platform under the BlackRock name.

MGPA is an independent, private equity real estate investment advisory operating in the Asia-Pacific region and Europe.

BlackRock said the acquisition would extend its real estate debt and equity investment operations and create a "truly global real estate investment manager across Asia-Pacific, Europe and the US".

"The combined platform of over 400 on-the-ground real estate professionals, in 18 offices across 13 countries, will operate under the BlackRock name," it said.

The new platform will have around 700 investor clients.

The broadened business will be able to offer access to the top six markets in the world, which represent 75% of the investable commercial real estate universe, BlackRock said.

BlackRock said there was virtually no overlap of products between the real estate investment offerings from both parties.

Mark McCombe, chairman for the Asia Pacific at BlackRock, said: "Bringing on board the MGPA team with such a real estate expertise is an important milestone as we continue to broaden our product set and accelerate our growth in Asia Pacific."

Simon Treacy, the former group chief executive of MGPA, has become CIO at BlackRock Real Estate.

Treacy said the combined investment teams and staff provided local market coverage that would allow the platform to expand its activities across the property spectrum, "at a time when allocations to property as both a core allocation and an alternative investment are growing".

BlackRock had $3.86trn in assets under management at the end of June.