Ben Sanderson, an executive director of real estate fund management at Federated Hermes is joining Aviva Investors in January next year to lead its real estate business.

Aviva said James Stevens, who has led the real estate business on an interim basis since February, will take up the new role of head of real estate investment, reporting to Sanderson. Stevens took on the interim role following Daniel McHugh’s appointment as real assets chief investment officer.

The global asset manager said it has appointed Sanderson as managing director with responsibility for the direct real estate business. Sanderson will report to McHugh and join the real assets senior leadership team.

Sanderson joins the business after 13 years at Federated Hermes, where he was most recently responsible for global real estate, UK residential and real estate debt investment programmes, as well as overseeing ESG strategy.

Prior to Federated Hermes, Sanderson was at M&G Real Estate for almost six years, where he held the positions of fund manager for the global real estate securities fund and head of global strategy and view formation for private real estate investments.

He is the current chair of the UK Investment Property Forum.

McHugh said Sanderson has demonstrable experience in leading teams and setting and executing business strategies, as well as strong pedigree in research and ESG.

“I look forward to working closely with him to further strengthen our direct real estate capabilities. I also want to thank James for leading the team over the past several months and to congratulate him on his new role.”

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