Aussie expertise wanted for London real estate market

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One recruiter says the City of London market is crying out for Australian Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) expertise.

"The amount of hiring here is ridiculous," says Timothy Rowe, managing director of London-based Cobalt Recruitment. "It's a candidate-led market."

REITs are only just taking off in Europe. The United Kingdom will allow tax efficient REITs vehicles from January, while Germany's finance minister has submitted a draft law for the introduction of REITs next year. By comparison, REITs have existed in Australia for several decades, making this the most mature market after the US.

Rowe says London wants Aussie talent as a result. "We hire in a lot Antipodean talent," he says, adding "Australian REIT specialists tend to be very financially literate."

A shortage of qualified staff has led London pay to double over the past five years, according to Rowe.

Rates in London are apparently highest for structured product specialists who can work with commercial mortgage backed securities. Just how high are they? Take a look at the figures below, taken from Cobalt's study of 500 people working in the commercial mortgage backed market over the past 12 months, purport to provide the answer.

Analyst CMBS Salary 45,000 to 60,000, Bonus 30%-60%

Associate CMBS Salary 60,000 to 75,000, Bonus 50%-75%

Associate director (VP) Salary 75,000 to 90,000, Bonus 65%-150%

Director (Senior VP) Salary 90,000 to 120,000, Bonus 100%-200%

Managing director Salary 120,000 +, Bonus 300%+

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