About us
Local expertise makes the difference
Interview with Simon Purdy, Country Manager Australia
About us
Local expertise makes the difference
Interview with Simon Purdy, Country Manager Australia

AM ALPHA has been investing in Australia for more than ten years.

Simon Purdy, AM ALPHA Country Manager Australia, explains the characteristics of Australia as a real estate location and AM ALPHA's investment approach in an interview. 

How do you classify Australia as a location for real estate investments?

In the APAC region, Australia has long been at the top of the list for international real estate investors. The fundamentals speak for themselves. The Australian economy has proven to be very robust over the past decade and, therefore, remains an attractive environment for investment. In addition, the Australian Dollar compares favourably to the US Dollar and the Euro, which provides an additional incentive to invest. 

What are AM ALPHA's focus areas in Australia?

As an independent family office, AM ALPHA believes every crisis is an opportunity to invest counter-cyclically. We specialise in finding imbalances in the market and translating them into investment opportunities. In Australia, we favour office properties because the office market Down Under is very cyclical. With the right timing and the right investment strategy, we create added value for our investment partners. 

For example, we acquired our first office property in Sydney, 309 George Street in 2011, when the major tenant was vacating from the building built for its purpose. Instead of focusing on concerns about an empty building, we see the opportunity to introduce a refurbished product that had a niche in the office market. Despite the challenging leasing market which saw an abundance of sublease space, through intensive asset management, we managed to core and realized a significant increase in the asset’s intrinsic value when we divested in 2015 with a significant increase in value. We see signs there could be yet more opportunities for such value-add play in the current market climate.  

What distinguishes AM ALPHA's investment approach?

As an equity-strong investor, we are prepared to invest in our buildings to ensure and expand their future ability even in a challenging market environment. We focus less on the core prestigious properties and more on well-located mid-sized projects for occupiers who want high-quality space but may need to be more cost-conscious to afford premium office space. To identify these micro-locations and properties, however, on-the-ground presence and knowledge is essential as real estate is a very local business.

Which regions are at the top of the agenda in Australia?

Indeed, the east coast, with the metropolises of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, is high on the list. But as always, we will be bold to strike when the right opportunity arises even away from these locations. For example, we successfully transacted in Adelaide. The investment was a logistics centre of around 45,000 sqm consisting of two buildings on the outskirts of Adelaide, which the listed company Treasury Wine Estates uses as its national distribution centre. 

Sustainability has a special significance in Australia. How does AM ALPHA deal with this?

As a family business, we think long-term per se, acting across generations and sustainably. We anticipate our actions' impact and strive to create sustainable value for ourselves, our partners and stakeholders.

As part of our investment strategies, we always take a 'manage to green' approach and upgrade all our properties during the investment period to improve sustainability. For example, in 2022, we installed a 100-kilowatt solar array on the roof of our heritage office building in Brisbane TC Beirne.

AM ALPHA had invested successfully in Sydney, in Adelaide and recently in Brisbane. What makes this city interesting for AM ALPHA?

Brisbane has experienced impressive economic growth in recent years. Key sectors such as technology, education and tourism have developed rapidly, creating a solid economic foundation for the city. Thanks to its strong economy, innovative infrastructure and favourable climate, the population of Queensland's state capital has grown to 2.5 million people in recent years. 

Due to the influx, the demand for real estate in Australia's third-largest city continuously increases. A growing population means higher demand for residential and commercial property, positively influencing property prices and rental yields. This trend is set to continue. The 2032 Olympic Games in Brisbane will further increase the city's attractiveness, making Brisbane an extremely attractive location for property investors in the future.