GERMANY – Siegfried Cofalka has been fired with immediate effect as board executive at OIK, the fund arm of listed German real estate firm IVG Immobilien.
IVG declined to disclose the reason for its abrupt dismissal of Cofalka but said Peter Le Loux, OIK’s chief executive, would be assuming his responsibilities.
OIK is Germany’s leading provider of commercial property funds for institutional investors, with €10bn under management.
OIK was formerly a joint venture between IVG and private bank Sal. Oppenheim and Cofalka had been a member of its board since 1999.
Cofalka’s dismissal comes more than seven months after IVG took control of OIK by acquiring a 44% stake held by Sal. Oppenheim.
Shortly after IVG’s move, Le Loux replaced Cofalka as chief executive of OIK.
IVG also made clear when it took control of Wiesbaden-based OIK that it would not run it as a separate business but fully integrate it. Other core businesses of Bonn-based IVG are portfolio management and project development.
Cofalka had previously said OIK would invest €2bn in new commercial properties during 2006 and 2007, with between 30-40% going to retail objects. OIK also rolled out its first Asian property fund in 2006 and expects to take in €1bn in assets by the end of 2007.
In other news, US private equity firm Cerberus has sold one of its German housing firms to Deutsche Bank’s real estate arm RREEF and Italy’s Pirelli Real Estate for €1.7bn.
RREEF and Pirelli RE are paying €350m in equity capital and financing the rest with debt to buy BauBeCon, which owns and operates 27,000 flats in northern Germany and Berlin.
Cerberus acquired BauBeCon in late 2005 from BGAG, the investment arm of a German trade union, for €1bn.
In a statement, Pirelli RE CEO Carlo Puri Negri said the BauBeCon deal was an important step towards his firm’s goal of building a major investment platform for German real estate.
At €3bn, Pirelli RE’s German real estate holdings already account for a quarter of its total assets.