KKR & Co. is planning an offer for ING Group’s global real estate investment unit as the private equity firm diversifies its holdings, according to people with knowledge of the situation.
Vornado Realty Trust and Apollo Global Management are also looking at the unit, said the people, who declined to be identified because the matter is private. A buyer would have to assume capital commitments ING has made to its real estate funds, which managed €71.1 billion ($99.5 billion) of assets as of June 30.
KKR is seeking to invest in asset management businesses as corporate buyouts have shrunk to a fraction of their size during the boom in mergers and acquisitions. The firm said on Thursday it is close to hiring nine traders from Goldman Sachs Group to start a unit that will raise money for an equities hedge fund.
ING Real Estate Investment Management, which includes ING Clarion, had $92.7 billion in assets under management as of Dec. 31, 2009, according to Pensions & Investments data.
“We’ve announced that we are evaluating the position of REIM within the bank,” said Raymond Vermeulen, a spokesman for ING. “We haven’t concluded that process yet.”
Spokesmen for Apollo, KKR and Vornado declined to comment.