What is a typical week for Didobi’s investment market research team?

Stephen Ryan, who leads the Didobi Investment Research team, takes a look at the week ahead and how we support clients in a number of different ways. With the increased velocity of change, multiplying data assets and complexity in decision making, having the right research skills, experience and support is key.

This week is going to be another busy one for research. There are three client projects to be progressed and each one is unique and at a different stage. Two of the clients are real estate fund managers (though their projects are quite distinctive) and the third client is a member-led organisation.

Project 1 – affordable mixed tenure housing

The first fund manager is an independently owned property investment manager entirely focused on UK and European real estate. The manager acts on behalf of a select number of clients and funds. There is no dedicated research team within the firm, but research projects are regularly outsourced to chosen consultants such as us.

We have been asked to look in-depth at the fast-evolving world of affordable mixed tenure housing and to report back within six weeks on key developments and trends. The project has just kicked off, so we are at the initial stage of marshalling the data. As always, the project is clearly scoped and budgeted and is on target. We sometimes work with this client in their offices but most of the time we work remotely, communicating by e-mail and phone. Our responsiveness and international network suit this client’s requirements.

Project 2 – supporting the client’s in-house team

The second fund manager client offers institutional investors access to core real estate investments in the residential and retail property sectors. The portfolios include only high-quality assets and there is no gearing or development risk. This client has an in-house research team, which we support by fine-tuning some aspects of their work and client-facing outputs. We regularly travel to this client’s offices to work alongside the research and investment relations teams there. This client appreciates our deep understanding of institutional investment and how investment consultants work.

Project 3 – managing the research process

The third client is a member-led trade association in the real estate investment space. We regularly work for trade associations, helping them to deliver their rolling research programmes. There are two roles we play for such clients:

  1. We can provide the detailed research, as we did for the Investment Property Forum in 2019 when we worked on a report called ‘Global Capital Flows in a World of Increasing Nationalism and Protectionism’ https://www.didobi.com/publications/;
  2. We can project manage the research process in cases where the research has been outsourced to universities or other consultants.

When working with trade associations, our point of contact is often a research committee rather than an individual. With research committees, contact is more often conference calls than physical meetings.

Our research clients are often fund managers or trade associations, so this week is not unusual in that respect. There is one unusual feature of this week: one of our clients has asked us to coordinate and synthesise research inputs from three unconnected external experts. This is a quite a challenge but an extremely interesting one.

We have a head start. Given our many years of research experience, we fully understand the challenges facing clients. There is no need for the client to spend ages explaining the context or the nature of their requirements.

Which reminds me… I must stop working on this blog, even though it is fun, and get back to analysis and writing 😉.

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