Aware Super has set up a separate Australian real estate platform led by Michelle McNally.

The A$155bn (€102bn) Australian industry superannuation fund has appointed McNally CEO of Aware Real Estate to manage and grow the new division’s A$1.5bn property portfolio.

McNally joins from property fund manager ISPT where she had oversight of A$20bn in funds under management.

Aware Real Estate is being set up in partnership with Altis Property Partners, which will act as an independent Australian real estate investment manager.

Aware Real Estate will oversee the super fund’s directly-owned Australian build-to-rent, industrial and office property portfolio.

Damien Webb, Aware Super’s deputy CIO and head of real assets, said: “The megatrends around inflation and interest rates are turning – it’s going to be a more difficult market for investing than it has been in the past five to 10 years when there was a strong flow of cheap money.

“There should be more opportunities for very well funded, highly regarded sponsors like us who have lots of capital and deploy that capital as a very long-term investor.”

Asked why the fund finds it necessary to establish a property platform, Webb said: “We’re seeking to change the way we interact with the property market and other markets as well.

“For us to control the portfolio and offer competitive fees, it’s imperative that we continue with our journey towards internalising management of a large portion of the portfolio. That is across the board, from listed equities through to infrastructure and property as well as cash and credit.”

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