Swiss asset manager GAM is buying the real estate debt investment arm of Renshaw Bay.

The London-based real estate debt team, led by Jon Rickert, will transfer later this year.

Renshaw Bay, which said it had secured around $1.2bn (€1.09bn) of committed capital for its real estate debt strategy, closed its first property debt fund earlier this year.

The whole-loan fund, which is targeting the UK and Germany, was backed by a UK local authority pension fund, a US-based family trust and a global private bank.

Rickert, head of real estate finance at Renshaw Bay, will continue to run the 10-strong real estate debt team and invest in senior and mezzanine debt backed by UK and European real estate.

GAM chief executive Alexander Friedman said a “persistent, low-yield environment” makes real estate “enormously attractive”.

He said: “As an asset class, it is a prime area for active managers to excel – and one we have not offered to our clients in the past. It will further diversify our business mix, adding a sustainable stream of revenues tied to long-term capital commitments.”

Renshaw Bay was launched in 2011 by Bill Winters in partnership with Reinet Fund and RIT Capital Partners.