Carlyle hires global real estate IR pro

Alok Gaur, formerly of Credit Suisse Real Estate Private Funds Group and more recently Greenhill & Co, has joined Carlyle in its Washington DC headquarters.

The Carlyle Group has appointed an investor relations professional to focus exclusively on global real estate, sister news site PERE has learned.

Alok Gaur has joined the private equity titan in its Washington D.C. office as a managing director, having most recently been at Greenhill & Co, which he joined last year from Credit Suisse Real Estate Private Funds Group.

Carlyle was not immediately available for comment, but he is thought to be the first dedicated global real estate investor relations professional at the firm, underlining its intent in the sector. It comes at a time when some global investors remain sceptical of large commingled opportunistic funds.

Prior to joining Carlyle, Gaur was a principal at Greenhill where he worked in the Real Estate Capital Advisory group which raises equity for real estate funds and ventures targeting North America, Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Before that, he spent five years at Credit Suisse’s placement business where he was stationed in its Chicago office before decamping to Greenhill in April 2010 along with up to 12 other executives. He has also spent part of his career at The John Buck Company and was an advisor at Coopers & Lybrand’s real estate advisory group.

He reports to Michael Arpey who joined last November to oversee new fund formation and the development of new products for investors, as well as coordinate Carlyle’s global investor relations team. Arpey was also at Credit Suisse where he was co-head of the Customized Fund Investment Group (CFIG), the private equity fund of funds business within Alternative Investments.

Carlyle is one of the largest private equity real estate groups in the world.

It was ranked Number 8 globally in the annual PERE 30 rankings last year having raised $8.8 billion in the five years to April 2010. Its most recent fundraising exploits came in 2007 and 2008 when it closed Carlyle Realty Partners V on $3 billion and Carlyle Europe Real Estate Partners III on a similar amount.

Currently it is said to be out raising Carlyle Realty Partners VI. An SEC filing last year declined to detail the target amount but it is thought to be a sum similar to the predecessor vehicle. In November 2010, The School Employees Retirement System of Ohio reportedly approved a $30m (€ 22.5m) commitment to the fund.

A recent report suggested Carlyle was also marketing a follow-up European fund, though this has been dismissed by those familiar with the firm.