Warburg Pincus-backed Indonesian shopping mall developer NWP Retail announced on Tuesday that it had appointed former CLSA and Morgan Stanley executive Kevin Kow as its new chief investment officer.
In his new role, Kow, who is said to have been involved in $2.5 billion in real estate transactions so far in his career, is charged with leading investment strategy across the island nation for the shopping centre investment platform, according to a statement from the company, which announced $200 million in fresh funding earlier this year.
“I am delighted to welcome Kevin to our leadership team, as we continue to expand our business across the archipelago,” said NWP Retail’s president director and CEO Timothy Daly. “Kevin brings a stellar track record of deal-making and real estate transactions across Asia Pacific, and we look forward to leveraging Kevin’s experience to enhance our investment strategy and efforts in Indonesia.”
800,000 Square Metres of Malls Already Built
Kow, who spent 11 years at Morgan Stanley Real Estate investment, including serving as country head for the US investment bank’s property fund management division in Singapore, is coming on board with the Jakarta-based firm just two months after its latest fund raising.
Most recently, Kow had served with CLSA Real Estate where he was head of Singapore and Southeast Asia after joining the company from MSREI.
NWP, founded in 2015 by Warburg Pincus and Indonesian retail developer PT City Retail Developments Tbk, focuses on bringing modern shopping malls to Southeast Asia’s most populous nation. The retail real estate investment firm now has a portfolio of 33 projects covering 800,000 square meters of gross floor area across the Indonesian archipelago.
Betting on Indonesian Retail Growth
“The investment thesis into Indonesia retail is undeniable – a fast growing middle class and increased consumption in the world’s fourth most populous country,” Kow said in the statement. “NWP Retail’s portfolio includes Tier 1 assets and extends into Tier 2 and 3 cities, which directly benefit from improved household spending power.”
In line with NWP’s obejctive of capitalising on Indonesia’s rapid urbanization, Kow said he expects that the ongoing development of the country’s emerging cities will boost demand for brick and mortar malls.
“From a supply perspective, the market is highly fragmented and under-served,” NWP’s new chief investment officer said. “Many cities are still without modern mall formats. We have developed new malls and from the swift take-up from tenants and shoppers, we have seen proof of the strength of demand.”
At NWP, Kow is to cooperate closely not only with Daly, but also with company COO Melanie Alshab, who previously worked together with Daly at Warburg Pincus-invested China retail real estate venture Red Star Macalline and at Simon Property Group in the US.
In NWP’s February funding round, the company raised about $200 million from new investors Korean Teachers’ Credit Union (KTCU) and CITIC Securities’ One-Belt-One-Road (CSOBOR) Fund, as well as from existing shareholders including Warburg Pincus.