The National Pension Service (NPS) of Korea has hired the Townsend Group, awarding it a $400m (€295.5m) mandate to invest in Asian real estate.

Townsend said it would target co-investments, joint ventures, clubs, secondary fund interests and primary commingled funds for the NPS as it looks to increase exposure to real estate.

Anthony Frammartino, partner at Townsend, said it would consider the “entirety” of Asia Pacific, excepting Korea.

He said: “Asia offers a compelling investment opportunity to target both growth and dislocation, while leveraging the scale of our combined platforms.”

Townsend was hired by NPS in 2010 to invest $300m opportunistically in the Americas, focusing primarily on the US market, as well as Canada, Brazil and Mexico.

The US firm opened an Asia office in Hong Kong in 2011.