Pacific Star, HSH Nordbank launch $ 705 mln Asia fund

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SINGAPORE, Oct 5 (Reuters) Pacific Star Group, a Singapore-based real estate investment and fund management firm, is launching a 500 million euro (5 million) fund with Germany's HSH Nordbank [HSH.UL] to invest in Asian property.

The fund will initially invest in real estate in Japan, Singapore and South Korea before expanding to emerging markets in the region such as India and China, Pacific Star President Frank-Rainer Vaessen told Reuters in an interview.

''We'll look at residential, retail and office real estate assets. Less office, because returns are not that attractive.

Housing and retail are especially important in Asia where the population is growing and incomes are rising,'' Vaessen said.

The fund, which will invest in property development as well as existing assets, could be the first of a series of funds to be jointly set up between Pacific Star and the German bank, the world's biggest ship financier, he added.

Pacific Star, which has about billion in assets under management, will raise 0-500 million in new money this year, Vaessen said.

He expects middle-class housing demand to stay strong in China and India but said he would hesitate investing in Singapore office property assets because future supply would be strong.

REUTERS SR SSC1146

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