Industry Veteran Gale Joins Mack Real Estate Group

Saying it was a job he couldn’t pass up, commercial real estate veteran Barden Gale has joined Mack Real Estate Group as vice chairman & member of its investment committee as the firm expands its senior team to handle increased activity in the U.S. and abroad.
Barden_Gale

Barden Gale

Saying it was a job he couldn’t pass up, commercial real estate veteran Barden Gale has joined Mack Real Estate Group as vice chairman & member of its investment committee as the firm expands its senior team to handle increased activity in the U.S. and abroad.

Gale, who will work out of MREG’s New York City office, was most recently CEO of JER Partners in McLean, Va. He joined JER from Starwood Capital Group, where he had served as Vice Chairman of Real Estate.

MREG is a real estate investment and management firm founded earlier this year by William Mack, Richard Mack and Stephen Mack, a family with deep roots in commercial real estate. The firm invests capital in real estate strategies for the Mack family and also partners with institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals. It has also offices in Los Angeles and Seattle through its Mack Urban affiliate and expects to open a London branch in 2014.

“It’s a pleasure as well as a privilege to join the Macks in their new endeavor,” Gale told Commercial Property Executive. “As an investor and partner of their predecessor firm, I have been consistently impressed with the Macks’ investment acumen, and even more by their integrity and steady hands through multiple market cycles.

“Richard Mack is one of the young leaders in the real estate industry I admire most,” he added. “The opportunity to become part of this team was too great to pass up.”

The Macks formed MREG after William Mack and Richard Mack sold AREA Property Partners to ARES Management L.L.C. in May. It was one of the biggest deals of the year as AREA added its $6 billion in real estate equity investments to ARES portfolio, boosting it to $8 billion in total committed capital. Richard Mack, now CEO of MREG and former North America CEO of AREA, continues as a consultant with ARES until Dec. 31. During their tenure at AREA, investment funds collectively invested in more than $70 billion of diversified real estate ventures in 25 countries.

MREG debuted in August with portfolio of properties and developments totaling 6 million square feet of owned and managed assets. The firm also has interests in groups that control more than 60 million square feet. Several months later, the firm has already announced one deal through its Mack Urban affiliate. Earlier this month, Mack Urban and AECOM Capital, the investment fund of AECOM Technology Corp. acquired six acres in downtown Los Angeles and are building a multi-family project as part of a reported $750 million investment.

“As we increase our activity across the United States and beyond, we’re selectively expanding Mack Real Estate Group’s core of senior-level investment talent. Barden is the perfect fit for our long-term, flexible approach to real estate acquisition and ownership,” Richard Mack, CEO of MREG, said in a news release. “His investment acumen and deep, long-lasted relationships will be invaluable as we continue to source and evaluate new transactions and build our institutional business. Barden’s pedigree would be hard to match, and we’re extremely pleased to welcome him.”

Before joining Starwood, Gale was Chief Investment Officer for Real Estate at ABP Investments U.S., Inc., the investment arm of Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP (now APG), one of the world’s largest pension funds. He previously held investment banking roles at Salomon Brothers, Inc. in London and New York and at Nesbitt Burns Securities in New York. Gale also was a principal of a real estate development company in New York and a practicing attorney.

Gale is a member of the Property Investment Committee of the National Pension Reserve Fund of Ireland. He was a former board member of Immobel, SA, of Belgium; Crow Industrial Trust, a private REIT; the Pension Real Estate Association and the Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate. In 2007, he received the Industry Achievement Award from NAREIT. Gale received his B.A. from Union College, his M.A. from the University of London and his J.D. from Columbia University.