Following my trip to Singapore (see previous blog), I flew down to Sydney to attend the annual Asia Pacific conference held by our parent, Knight Frank. Whilst, for reasons of conflict, KFIM operates independently of Knight Frank, we believe that the close relationship with the Group and particularly the "no obligation" access that we have to specialist market expertise from around the Globe gives us a significant advantage relative to many of our competitors. The Asia Pac conference, for example, has been a fantastic opportunity for me to spend some time with specialists from the region and to gain a first hand understanding of what is going on in their markets.
Bearing in mind that KFIM is fundamentally a European focussed Investment Manager, you might ask "so what?". Well, in our view, gaining a global perspective is critical to both our forecasting ability and the creation of the strategies required to achieve individual Client investment targets. Cross border money has undoubtedly had a major impact on both investor demand and development starts across the world. This in turn has impacted on yields and will, in time, inevitably lead to a slow down in rental growth as the supply of new stock increases. With new money outbound from Asia arguably having had a bigger impact on the global markets than money from anywhere else, understanding the region becomes particularly critical (and therefore access to regional expertise becomes essential).
It would be inappropriate of me to mention my trip to Sydney without commenting on the recently opened Knight Frank office. Talk about WOW factor; in terms of work space, design, environment, it is probably as good as it gets! If any of our friends or clients are ever in Sydney, it is well worth a visit.