REAL ESTATE - Invista chief executive Duncan Owen said last week he saw "a couple of good years" left in the central London office market as he reported strong asset growth in Invista’s Insight Foundation Property Trust.

In a trading statement issued last week, the firm reported total UK returns of 3.7% for the third quarter and claimed the UK residential market "remains solid".

"We continue to see evidence of robust demand [for UK real estate] from investors," the firm said.

Owen told IPE Real Estate that Invista was looking to exit and sell assets from a number of funds but that the plan did not signal that the group was steering away from the UK market. "We have 15 funds and they have a myriad of risk-return objectives," he said. "There are different reasons for divesting. You can’t read too much into this."

Divestments over the next few months could total between £200m—300m. "It depends on which assets we sell and how effective we are at getting them to market," said Owen.

"It isn’t so important whether we get them to market before or after Christmas," he added. "What’s important is the price."

In its trading statement, the property investment management firm attributed growth in assets under management from £8bn to £8.6bn in the three months to September to a combination of strong investment returns and capital inflows. However, the firm added: "the level of assets under management will not grow materially" over the rest of the financial year.