REAL ESTATE - Ian Gleeson, head of property at Ireland’s €18.8bn National Pensions Reserve Fund, is to join Morley Fund Management.

It was not immediately clear what the departure would mean for the NPRF’s target of allocating 8% of its portfolio to real estate by 2009, from 2% currently. A fund spokesman declined to comment.

Morley said Gleeson would head up its international multi-manager property services from mid-May, reporting to Nick Mansley, director of strategy and indirect investment.

Gleeson is Morley’s latest senior appointment from pension funds. Last year it appointed ABP’s Paul van de Vaart to head its global real estate securities capability.

Gleeson explained the NPRF’s real estate investment approach in an interview with IPE Real Estate earlier this year. He said: "The idea behind including real estate was to enhance returns without increasing the overall level of risk in the fund. It was part of a wider decision to include alternatives."

Gleeson chairs the Investor Platform at INREV, the European Association for Investors in Non-listed Real Estate Vehicles.

Before joining the NRPF Gleeson was at fund manager F&C as director responsible for indirect property investment.

"At the NPRF Ian established the real estate investment programme deploying over €1bn in a range of investment vehicles across Europe, North America and Asia," Mansley said.

Morley manages around $4bn in property multi-manager mandates and a further $2bn in real estate securities and around US$50 billion in real estate assets in total.