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Council Formed to Educate DC Plans About Real Estate

    

NEW YORK, NY, May 1, 2013 -- As American workers continue searching for ways to boost their retirement income, a coalition of 10 global institutional real estate asset managers today announced the formation of a new trade group to help educate plan sponsors and consultants about ways in which investment in commercial real estate may enhance retirement security for defined contribution plans and their participants.

The New York-based Defined Contribution Real Estate Council (DCREC) will serve as a resource for investors and plan sponsors who may be considering alternative investments options, such as real estate, through their existing portfolios.

"We will learn from each other to the betterment of the entire market, said David Skinner, a principal with Prudential Real Estate Investors and co-president of the new group. "Whether in a public retirement fund or a private fund, real estate adds an important layer of diversification to the existing array of investment options which will help to reduce overall volatility."

"At the end of the day, our goal is to help plan sponsors and their participants achieve better investment outcomes through the use of institutional quality real estate solutions," said Scott Brooks of Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management and DCREC co-president. We are forming this council at a time when defined contribution plans are under increasing pressure to deliver improved outcomes for their participants.

Skinner and Brooks note that as traditional pension plans, or defined benefit plans, gave way to 401k plans and other similar defined contribution plans, investors and plan sponsors have failed to fully grasp the role commercial real estate can play as part of a balanced, long-term retirement savings portfolio.

The idea for DCREC stemmed from a September 2011 conference led by Ben Adams, Founding Partner of Ten Capital Management. This group of global real estate asset managers gathered to discuss ways in which real estate investment could help the more than 85 percent of American workers, without a traditional pension, save enough money for retirement.

In addition to serving as a forum for best practices, ideas, strategies and data, DCREC plans to generate original research and educational offerings.

"I tip my hat to the DCREC and its efforts to improve outcomes for the country's workers," said Charlie Ruffel, founder of PLANSPONSOR magazine and managing director of Kudu Advisors. "The defined contribution business is moving from a retail to an institutional business model and this group represents an important component of this trend. I believe the DCREC will serve as the focal point for this segment of the defined contribution business going forward."

Founding members include Prudential Real Estate Investors, Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, Goldman Sachs, Clarion Partners, Principal Real Estate Investors, Ten Capital Management, TIAA-CREF, ARIS Advisors, UBS Global Real Estate, and NAREIT.

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