US - The Townsend Group is to provide real estate consulting services to clients of investment consultant Watson Wyatt in the US.

Under the deal Townsend will be the exclusive real estate contractor to Watson Wyatt Investment Consulting. It will provide analysis of real estate investment trends and opportunities and access to its databases and manager research.

Townsend will also assist in the design and implementation of client real estate investment portfolios. Financial terms of the strategic alliance were not disclosed.

"This relationship benefits both organizations and, most importantly, our clients, who will have access to the world's premier real estate consulting firm," said Howard Crane, North American practice director for Watson Wyatt Investment Consulting.

"With real estate an important asset class for pension managers, this alliance helps us to provide clients with independent, world- class consulting services."

"This relationship will allow us both to do what we do best: serve the investment needs of institutional investors," said Townsend co-founder and principal Terrance Ahern.

Watson’s Sanjay Mansukhani will manage the relationship with Townsend.

Townsend provides consulting services to more than 70 client portfolios with real estate assets in excess of $70bn.