Dr Ngee Huat Seek, chairman of Global Logistic Properties and former president of GIC Real Estate has been named chairman of the Asia Pacific region for the Urban Land Institute (ULI), according to a statement released by the real estate industry non-profit last week.
Seek, who has a distinguished track record in Asia’s real estate industry served as head of Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC’s real estate division until his retirement in 2011 and takes on his volunteer role as ULI APAC chairman as the US-based organisation ramps up its regional and global leadership structure.
The former GIC executive will form part of a new global governance structure for the ULI, overseen by global chairman Randall K. Rowe, which includes chairman positions for the Americas; and Europe, the Middle East, and Africa; as well as Asia Pacific.
“ULI’s evolution as a global organization relies on our ability to improve local land use decisions on a global level,” Rowe explained. The ULI global leader supported Seek’s mission in APAC by adding that, “He has a solid understanding of what is needed to make ULI’s work more relevant and more impactful in this region, which will help keep the institute strong in the decades ahead.”
ULI Seeks to Expand Beyond US Base
Seek will serve a two-year term as chairman, starting from July 1. The graduate of National University of Singapore is a member of the board of directors at Brookfield Asset Management and Chongbang Holdings; as well as serving as a senior advisor to Frasers Centrepoint Ltd. Seek also holds a PhD degree in urban research from Australian National University.
According to the ULI, it has created the office of APAC chairman as part of its “global evolution initiative” which aims to promote engagement and membership levels worldwide. The ULI recently held its 2016 APAC Summit in Shanghai which attracted more than 500 industry professionals to the organisation’s biggest annual event in the region.
While there was wide attendance from companies based in Asia, there were also a large number of representatives of US companies such as Blackstone and Blackstone attending, reflecting the organisations’s US roots. Two of the event’s biggest sponsors, developers Hines and Tishman Speyer also hail from the US.
In Asia Pacific Seek is expected to work closely with ULI’s Asia Pacific CEO, John Fitzgerald and will serve as chairman of the Asia Pacific executive committee. Other executive committee members include Raymond Chow of Hongkong Land, Richard TG Price of CBRE Global Investors, Nicholas Brooke of Professional Property Services, Henry Cheng of Chongbang Group, Shuji Tomikawa of Mitsui Fudosan, Blake G. Olafson of Asia Capital Real Estate, Ramon D. Rufino of The Net Group, John Carf of Mirvac Group, Alison Cooke of Starr International Investment Advisors and Douglas Wu of Phoenix Property Investors.