Howard, who is fund manager of the RSA Shareholders Real Estate fund and deputy manager of BMO Commercial Property Trust, will succeed Peter Lowe as lead manager of BREI.
Lowe will continue to manage BREI’s assets, supported by the expanded BMO Real Estate Partners (BMO REP) team, until July 19, when his lead manager responsibilities will transfer to Howard.
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After the transfer, the board said Lowe would continue to assist Howard and the team “to ensure an orderly transition.”
Howard joined BMO REP in 2017 and serves on the Investment Committee, after which he worked at Federated Hermes.
The board also confirmed that chairman Vikram Lall, who was due to leave the board later this year, will remain chairman “beyond this period”, to “ensure shareholder continuity” in light of the change of principal director and the retirement of Rebecca Gates as director.
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Lall said: “We are delighted to have Matthew take on the role of our Senior Manager and look forward to working with Matthew to build on our impressive NAV performance record.
“We continue to believe that the company’s share price does not reflect [the] the value of the company and the quality of the portfolio. The board is addressing the fact that shareholder returns don’t match portfolio performance.”