Insurance giant Aegon unit closes RE strip sale

The $475bn asset manager moved a portfolio of 10 workforce housing properties off its general account into a vehicle backed by secondaries capital.

Aegon Asset Management, an affiliate of the insurance and financial services giant, has closed its third real estate GP-led deal in the space of two years.

The Netherlands-headquartered asset manager recapitalised a portfolio of 10 multi-family workforce housing properties representing $664 million in aggregate commitments as part of a process run by Evercore, according to a statement seen by Secondaries Investor.

The portfolio was originally acquired by Aegon’s insurance affiliate Transamerica Corporation and encompasses 3,087 units across states such as Arizona, California and Colorado.

“These are strategically assembled, high-quality, value-add properties that have performed positively throughout covid-19 and we believe have attractive future upside for our new partners,” said Scott Coté, global chief investment officer real assets at Aegon AM, in the statement.

Transamerica invests in real estate off its general account and has been planning to expand its third-party assets under management, a source with knowledge of the deal told Secondaries Investor. The portfolio was transferred off the general account into a joint-venture vehicle backed by two secondaries buyers, with Transamerica maintaining a minority stake.

The buyers, whose identities are not clear, are understood to be dedicated secondaries funds.

This is the third strip sale carried out by Aegon in the past 24 months, the source said, adding that there was potential upside for the secondaries investors in refurbishing individual units and common areas in the portfolio.

Aegon Asset Management had $475 billion under advisement across fixed income, real assets, equities and multi-asset portfolios as of December, according to its website.

Workforce housing is defined as affordable housing for households with earned income that is insufficient to secure quality housing near to their place of work, such as teachers and healthcare workers, affiliate title PERE noted

Real estate secondaries transactions representing $8.5 billion of net asset value either closed or were placed under contract in 2020, according to research by Landmark Partners. This figure tops the previous record of $8.2 billion in 2015.