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Private Real Estate

The PGGM Private Real Estate team manages the PGGM Private Real Estate Fund (PPREF) and invests in non-listed real estate vehicles across the globe. PGGM Private Real Estate invests on behalf of its investors, Dutch occupational pension funds, of which the largest is the pension fund of the healthcare sector (PFZW).

The team has been investing in global private real estate markets for decades. In 2010 PPREF had its inception when the PFZW portfolio was opened for other investors to participate. With an investment belief that “sustainability pays off” in place before that belief could be proven, sustainability has always been a driving force of the underlying strategy and the Team. PPREF is diversified across a broad range of metrics such as countries, sectors, investment styles, managers, buildings and tenants with the team structured across three regions:

• Europe
• Americas
• Asia-Pacific

Private Real Estate
(colored countries house active investments as of October 2023)
20 bln (EUR)


102 Investments

in portfolio

4000 >

Buildings in Portfolio



Strategy and performance

The PGGM Private Real Estate investment strategy is developed and executed by combining top-down & bottom-up approaches. The top-down strategy incorporates mega-trends such as demographic, climate and technological changes that drive the risk-return profile of real estate markets globally. The bottom-up analyses ensure that the investments are well chosen in a sector where specific building and related location selection are paramount in generating attractive returns.

Our clients’ investment objectives allow us to operate as a truly long-term investor which fits well with a long-lived asset class such as real estate. Our investment strategy combines long-term with a very hands-on involvement in the investment process. The governance position in the majority of our investments allows the team to take an active role in the investments in order to steer the changes at asset and portfolio level while taking long-term positions.

Strategic choices combined with best-in class execution enabled PPREF to outperform its global benchmark by over 100 bps annualized since its inception in 2010 while generating an attractive annual return of over 8%. The outperformance is not just present at global level but also each of the investment regions has outperformed its local benchmark over that same period.

Several of the key characteristics of PPREF are summarized below.

Private Real Estate2
In 2020, the GRESB Assessment structure fundamentally changed, establishing a new baseline for measuring Performance – this explains the decrease in performance score in that year)


While the concept and measurability of sustainability changed over time, the importance of the subject to the team and its resulting investment strategies has been prominent from the start.

A testimony of the attention for ESG is the fact that PGGM through its private real estate team was one of the three investors that founded the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) in 2009. GRESB has since become the leading global benchmarking platform for evaluating and comparing ESG performance in the real estate, and later also infrastructure, sector. By requiring submission of data to GRESB by all of our investments PPREF is able to benchmark its ESG profile on a global scale and receives increasingly important ESG data for its entire portfolio. As shown by the graph below PPREF has been able to achieve a virtually continuous improvement in its GRESB score over time. By improving faster than the general market PPREF has also outperformed its global ESG benchmark over that same period.


The investment belief that “sustainability pays off” is hard to quantify with our existing data but a simultaneous outperformance of both the global financial and the ESG benchmarks does show that the two can at least go hand in hand.

In 2018 the PGGM Private Real Estate team became involved with the EU Horizon 2020 project “Carbon Risk Real Estate Monitor” (CCREM). This project was initially a European project to understand the performance of the real estate sector as the energy sector transitions away from carbon- emitting sources. At termination of the European project PGGM funded the global extension of the CRREM methodology together with fellow global investors APG and NBIM. CRREM is now a global initiative with alignment/cooperation of INREV, EPRA, ULI greenprint, SBTi, IIGCC, NZAOA and many others.

By being an integral part of the creation of GRESB and CRREM as global standards for the real estate sector the team has been able to influence improvement in sustainability far beyond its own investments.