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Franklin Templeton plans infrastructure investment

Asset management firm Franklin Templeton’s real estate arm has established a newly dedicated business team to analyse, select and invest in real asset fund opportunities including energy, water, agriculture and timber.

Franklin Templeton Real Estate Advisors (FTREA), the global real estate investment arm of asset manager Franklin Templeton Investments, has announced that it has hired Joyce T. Shapiro, previously public operator of real assets at Toronto-based Brookfield Asset Management, to head a newly established business team dedicated to real asset multi-manager investment strategies and expanding the group’s capabilities to include infrastructure, energy, water, agriculture and timber, the company said in a statement.

The newly dedicated team plans to create a real assets fund of funds that will invest in real assets such as infrastructure among others, a source close to the company told Infrastructure Investor. The source also said that the fund has not been launched yet and there is no confirmed date as to when this might happen.

The fund will invest in Asia and Europe and also, to a lesser extent, in Americas, according to media reports.

Reports also suggest that the company is in the process of determining the amount that it will seek to raise for its real assets fund.

Jack Foster, managing director and head of Franklin Templeton’s real estate multi-manager business, said in a statement that real assets shared “many of the same economic fundamentals as real estate” and that the new team is a “natural extension of our business”.

Franklin Templeton Real Estate Advisors is a unit of San Mateo, California based Franklin Resources, a global investment management organisation operating as Franklin Templeton Investments.