21 January 2020 8.30am – 11am + Add to calendar Seminar UBS Offices

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As we enter the third decade of the third millennium, we take a look at the future of real estate, the outlook for the market and AREF's role in the coming year and beyond.



  • Kevin Aitchison, Head of Knight Frank Investment Management (Moderator)
  • Andrew Phipps, Head of EMEA Research and Insight, Cushman & Wakefield (Key note speaker and panel member)
  • Mat Oakley, Director, Commercial Research at Savills (Key note speaker and panel member)
  • Paul Richards, MD, AREF (Speaker and panel member)
  • Lord Jonathan Hill, currently Senior Adviser at UBS / former leading politician (panel member)
  • Ann Xu, Associate, CBRE Global Investors - Member of FutureGen Committee, FutureGen member on the ESG & Impact Investing Committee (panel member)

Kevin Aitchison

Head of Knight Frank Investment Management, Knight Frank Investment Management

Kevin is the Head of Knight Frank Investment Mangement and has over 25 years’ experience in the UK real estate market.  Before joining the business, he spent 11 years at ING Real Estate Investment Management (ING REIM), culminating in his appointment as CEO of the UK business in October 2008.  During his time at ING he had extensive experience of the portfolio and fund management of both segregated accounts and collective investment schemes, acting on behalf of a variety of UK and overseas institutional clients.  As CEO he took responsibility for the re-structuring of the ING REIM UK business, creating an enhanced focus on client service and performance.

Kevin is a member of the Investment Property Forum.  In his spare time he is Chair to the Board of Great Britain Wheelchair Rugby, the only contact sport for tetraplegic athletes, suffering both upper and lower limb disability.

Jonathan Hill

Senior Adviser, Corporate Client Solutions, UBS

Until he resigned in the aftermath of the European Referendum, Jonathan was European Commissioner for Financial Stability, Financial Services and the Capital Markets Union. In that role, which he took on in November 2014, he was responsible for regulating Europe’s financial services, for international regulatory co-operation, for the Banking Union and for taking forward work to strengthen the European Single Market for capital.

He was nominated to be Britain’s European Commissioner in July 2014, having been Leader of the House of Lords since January 2013. As Leader of the Lords and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, he was a member of the Cabinet and responsible for the delivery of the government’s legislative programme in the House of Lords. 

He first became a Government Minister in May 2010, having been appointed to the House of Lords as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Education. He was the Minister responsible for getting the Academies and Free Schools reforms off the ground.

In 1998 he had founded Quiller Consultants, a strategic communications consultancy, which he ran until 2010, having sold it in 2006 to Huntsworth plc and successfully completed an earn-out.

That followed an earlier period as a political adviser, including four years at 10, Downing Street where he worked both in the Policy Unit and as the Prime Minister’s Political Secretary. In that role, he ran Prime Minister John Major’s campaign during the 1992 General Election campaign. Before that, he had served as a Special Adviser to Rt Hon Kenneth Clarke in three Government Departments: Employment, DTI and Health.

He started his political career in the Conservative Research Department, having previously worked for Jacob Rothschild and in publishing after graduating from Trinity College, Cambridge with a Double First in History.

Mat Oakley

Director, Commercial Research, Savills

Mat is head of Savills UK and European commercial property research team and specialises in the office, leisure and retail sectors.

Mat's experience includes work on a variety of topics including various office markets, the impact of major infrastructure developments, advising on tenant mix for both in and out-of-town retail and leisure developments, environmental impact analyses and assessing demand for and master planning leisure developments. He has extensive experience in working with the public sector on inward Investment matters and with the private sector on relocation studies.

Mat has a particular focus on the UK and authors many of Savills UK market reports.

Andrew Phipps

Head of EMEA Research and Insight at Cushman & Wakefield, Cushman & Wakefield

Andrew’s business career started as a management consultant taking him around the world.  His next role was at GFK as Head of Retail for the UK and progressed through to being Global Director for Digital. 

Andrew joined CBRE as Head of Research and Consulting and moved on to head up Research and Insight across a number of global and regional sectors.  His passions remain the interconnectivity of disruptors, influencers and changes in behaviour that in turn lead to critical insights for business and industry.

Paul Richards

Managing Director, AREF

Paul is Managing Director of AREF. 

Before joining AREF, Paul was Head of the European Real Estate Boutique within Mercer’s investment consulting business for almost 10 years, previously he was Head of Indirect Real Estate Investment and Global Managed Accounts at LaSalle Investment Management, where he was responsible for managing global portfolios of unlisted real estate funds for clients from Europe and Asia Pacific.

He has over 25 years of real estate experience in investment, corporate finance and research, and has advised investors, occupiers and venture capital companies on property portfolio strategy and on financial structuring, including PFI, senior and mezzanine debt and joint venture arrangements. His employers have included LaSalle Investment Management, Cushman & Wakefield and Henderson Investors.

Before coming into the world of real estate, Paul worked in marketing and market research. He originally studied Physiological Sciences at Lincoln College, Oxford and has a Master of Science in Real Estate from City University Business School, London, now Cass Business School.

Ann Xu

Senior Associate, CBRE Global Investors

Ann joined CBRE Global Investors in 2016 and splits her time across the CBRE UK Property PAIF and CBRE UK Affordable Housing Fund. Her role includes fund management, transactions, asset management and ESG/ Impact reporting.  Prior to this, Ann was on the graduate training program at Savills.  

Ann is a chartered surveyor and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Land Economy from Cambridge University

Tuesday 21st January 2020

08.30 Registration & breakfast
09.00 Event start
10.30 Event end

UBS, 5 Broadgate, London EC2M 2QS

This event is FREE and open to all AREF future generation* staff from AREF Fund, Affiliate, Associate and Investor member firms (view our list of members here). 

Non-members/trial members:
£79+VAT / £25+VAT for FutureGen (please email us if you are a non-member wishing to book a place)

This event counts as 2hr of CPD.