REAL ESTATE - Fund manager Morley has set out its strategy for investment in Asian real estate on behalf of its largest client, the life insurance business of parent company Aviva.

The initial investment of US$2bn (€1.4bn) will involve joint ventures with local partners in Japan, China, South Korea and India. The first, announced last week, will partner Morley with real estate firm Mitsubishi in a $500m (€366m) deal.

Asian fund manager Andrew Peacock, as head of the regional team, will manage the investment. The firm is currently recruiting for a head of Asia property.

The firm plans to grow its Asia business to US$10bn (€7.3bn) over four years, half of it in Japan. Otherwise, no information was available before deadline on the risk profile of the investment – or of the ratio of investment in mature markets such as Singapore to higher risk markets such as China.

Spokesman Strahan Wallis said: "Right now demand is from our largest client …However, we expect as with Europe that there will be increasing demand from other clients as we develop our business in Asia. If there is enough demand from our clients we will certainly look at the possibility of setting up funds."

Wallis said the Asia fund would follow a similar strategy to that for Europe launched three years ago. It now manages eight European funds.

"We expect our growth and approach to Asia to be similar," said Wallis.