At Ashe Morgan our mission is to deliver enhanced results to clients and investors through the superior active management of real estate investment. We achieve this by combining our intuitive approach to real estate transactions with a thorough understanding of our clients’ business needs.
We provide disciplined financial strategy for people undertaking property development and investment transactions and are committed to consolidating participation in direct real estate investment by co-investing with and representing, in an ethical manner, the interests of investors as a capital provider and joint venture partner.
We have a high level of individual and collective skill. Since its foundation 30 years ago, AsheMorgan has navigated through some of the most rewarding and difficult property market cycles, all the time guided by its original principals. Our extensive understanding and knowledge of the characteristics of real estate are applied whether we are acting as an advisor to clients (directly investing) or as a manager of funds making real estate investments on behalf of AsheMorgan and its clients.
The following core values underpin our mission:
AsheMorgan has been an active participant in real estate finance and investment since its foundation in 1981. We are experienced across all major property asset classes including specialist real estate assets and excell in adding value at every stage of the transactional process. We apply pragmatic processes so that our investments can have sustainable, commercial impact. We don’t reinvent the wheel.
Our focus is to deliver the best possible outcome with the most attractive risk and return for investors and asset creators. We are highly responsive to changing market environments. Our history demonstrates our tenacity, resilience, and ability to create wealth in variable market landscapes. We navigate through ambiguity with a common sense approach. We don’t need to have all the answers.
Our employees are each equipped with a high level of individual and unique skills which allow for a collective and creative approach to be applied to each transaction. We pride ourselves on providing timely, practical and frank advice, and in devising unique solutions to suit each transaction. We love intellectual challenge and constantly look for ways to innovate. We are not afraid to break the rules.
We are disciplined in applying a solid framework of corporate governance practice and rigorous due diligence analysis to transactional risk management. We make honest, commercial choices so that our business and clients can prosper over the long term. We apply knowledge in a pragmatic way – we don’t over-complicate things to look clever.
At AsheMorgan we recognise that good teamwork is fundamental to success, whether it be managing a transaction internally or as part of a larger group made up of external professionals and stakeholders. We value difference and can be ourselves. We respect each other; we respect our clients.
We are proud of the insight and rigour of our work. We value ethics and honesty and are proactive in selecting partners who share the same commitment to ethical behaviour and good corporate practice. We speak the truth and have our clients’ best interests at heart.
The current market environment has seen a shift in perception:
LIMITED DEBT CAPITAL
Real estate debt markets have undergone rapid consolidation with a number of overseas and regional banks as well as mortgage funds scaling back significantly on funding. Options available to both investors and developers have become more limited and there is greater emphasis on understanding the daily availability of funds.
Financial institutions have rationed credit, restrained their loan-to-cost ratios (compared to the previous focus on loan-to-value ratios), and increased the price of debt. As a result the requirement for structured debt and “equity” capital has increased.
TIGHTER CREDIT PROCESSES
Lenders have introduced additional levels of credit assessment and further requirements for approval. Applications for credit must be well supported with the risks identified and covered.
AVERSION TO MEZZANINE DEBT
The paradigm has shifted in relation to capital structures with a general preference for equity rather than mezzanine debt. Asset creators now show preference for joint ventures or similar capital injections in order to mitigate potential financial risks. In addition, senior lenders now generally prefer capital that is supplied as equity to avoid the need for inter-creditor agreements. This has led to increased demand for equity capital that sits alongside the asset creator.
REALISTIC ASSET VALUES
The market correction over recent years has returned asset prices to more sustainable and bankable levels. In many cases this is challenging project feasibilities. However it also provides confidence that values are sustainable and reduces the risk of further price falls on completed product. Excess activity and stock continues to overhang some asset types and regional markets, however many assets are now trading at more sensible levels. In the next few years passive investments may provide limited value upside but be attractive to risk adverse investors. Value-add and opportunistic investments may be undertaken with potentially greater confidence a relatively stable environment.
INCREASED ASSET AVAILABILITY
Renewed confidence among asset creators and more realistic asset values are assisting an increase in market activity. This is leading to increased demand for finance and the flow on increase in opportunities for equity funding.
Lenders are increasingly focused on the commitment and skills of the counterparty to deliver and support the proposal. In most cases it is no longer enough that the asset and funding structure meets financial guidelines.
While markets never cease to change, the same principles still guide AsheMorgan as when it was founded in 1981. Those early years – which saw a period of property market disruption – established risk management as a continuing focus for the company.
The creation of a solid framework of corporate governance and the implementation of a risk management culture is one of the key responsibilities of the Board. The Board regularly reviews its corporate governance practices but it is an imbedded aspect of the business culture. AsheMorgan applies a disciplined investment process to identify and manage risks.
The Investment Committee includes highly experienced personnel with a wide range of property expertise and is responsible for all investment decisions. It is independent from the deal origination and transaction teams. All investments continue to be monitored regularly during the transaction life cycle by means of Property Control Groups and regular reporting, among other things. Mitigation procedures are implemented to anticipate and manage risks.
The Investment Committee has a systemised approach in investment analysis. Matters which are considered include:
- Counterparty – capacity and capability
- Asset – general and specific value drivers and due diligence
- Feasibility – detailed assessment and modelling
- Risk – identification and mitigation
- Documentation – structure, loan agreements, settlement, contracts, reporting
- Compliance and reporting – PCG participation, regular reporting to investors
- Accounting and regulatory matters – statutory, tax and accounting compliance
A comprehensive due diligence checklist is tailored to each transaction according to the particular transaction and its risks. Due diligence testing ensures risks are identified and assessed and decisions are made on a fully informed basis. AsheMorgan works closely with all parties involved in a transaction to ensure that documentation of each debt and equity structure meets the specific transactions’ requirements and satisfies AsheMorgan’s risk and return objectives identified by the Investment Committee.
At AsheMorgan we understand that making the investment is only the first step. The responsibility ends when AsheMorgan and its investors receive proceeds consistent with the target return. This requires accurate asset and investment management until realisation. In some cases, AsheMorgan will act as asset manager while in other cases we will oversee the performance of third party management. In all cases we are committed to maintaining our focus with the support of the skill, knowledge and experience of our team.
AsheMorgan has a long-term commitment to positively engaging with the communities in which we operate. We have been supporting our community for over 30 years and during this time have assisted many charity organisations that work to support and improve where we live and work.
Our support for charities and community based organisations is as diverse as our staff and financial and time-based support is fostered and encouraged.
We’re passionate about connecting with our community and work to actively support charity organisations that enrich our community and reflect our values and beliefs.