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Head of Property

Canada Life Limited
London, United Kingdom
Closing date
May 5, 2024

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Job Function
Industry Sector
Finance - General
Employment Type
Full Time
Canada Life Asset Management manages over £41.9bn in fixed income, global equities, UK property and multi-asset solutions. Our investment options are designed to support our investors and their clients in meeting their long-term objectives.

Our solutions

Each of our offerings has been built for a purpose, whether it sits at the core of a portfolio to provide long-term growth or to offer access into a specific global market. Our 40-year plus history as asset managers means we have the expertise to provide high quality multi-asset and risk-profiled solutions as well as attractive equity, fixed income, alternative funds, and real estate finance.

Our heritage

Our parent company, Great-West Lifeco, is a financially strong and stable global organisation, with total assets under administration of £1,341bn. We also have more than 31 million customers worldwide. As the oldest Canadian life assurance company, Great-West Lifeco's foundations trace back to 1847 - meaning we've been helping our customers plan for the future for more than 170 years.

Our team

Canada Life Asset Management has over 100 colleagues and includes more than 50 experienced investment professionals, with almost 20 years' average industry experience and ten years' average tenure at Canada Life Asset Management.

Job Summary

• To manage and provide leadership within the Real Estate Team with a focus on the on-going monitoring of the existing portfolios (c£1.5bn), the negotiation of new leases with customers, agreeing rent reviews, ensuring performance meets customer expectations, inspecting properties, ensuring valuations are carried out, monitoring of rent collection and enforcing on lease terms as required.
• Responsible for the portfolio of finance lease and financing transactions (c£1bn), originating new assets and negotiating with counterparties and overseeing and managing large construction projects (up to £100m) over multiple years.
• Role spans both balance sheet portfolios (£1.4bn) and a unit linked fund (£0.2bn) sold to external customers, now in wind down.
• Responsible for managing the existing corporate estate including the future plans for the Potters Bar estate and overseeing refurbishment projects as required.
• Responsible for ESG and sustainability risks across the portfolios and implementation of the path to net zero for the property assets.
• Role is a member of the CLAM senior leadership team (and broader CLUK SLT) responsible for the day to day management and growth of the GWL/CL & IL global asset management business.
• To manage and provide leadership within the team (currently 12 senior people and three support/admin staff) with a focus on investment performance and strategy, and new business transactions which significantly influence CLUK and CLAM results.

What You'll Do

• Responsible and accountable for the UK property portfolios in accordance with policies, procedures, and statutory requirements (including health & safety), to achieve the required return within risk limits:
• Overseeing the investment and asset management (including strategy and execution) of the balance sheet, ACS and other linked portfolios in accordance with designated mandates and investment standards
• Reviewing all new acquisitions, disposals and development projects
• Authorising all leasing transactions within designated limits
• Overseeing the management and updating of the quarterly ALM property cash flows of the balance sheet portfolio plus the annual residual exit value revaluation
• Monitoring and reviewing fund performance across the portfolios
• Overseeing fund liquidity
• Overseeing the external market valuation process and reporting
• Overseeing the management of the sustainability impact of the portfolios and initiatives to promote and achieve carbon reduction
• Responsible for appointing managing agents, valuers, external consultants and advisors to support the ongoing management and development of the property business
• Overseeing the placing and management of insurance cover across the portfolios
• Responsible for ensuring appropriate processes, procedures, policies, standards and systems are in place and seeking ways they can be improved including AML sign off of new acquisitions and disposals
• Manage specific projects when required by the CIO / MD.
• Sourcing new assets (c£300m per annum) to support business growth as businesses require. The role requires extensive industry wide contacts and the ability to negotiate at a senior level and execute complex transactions quickly to maximise financial impact. Come up with innovative ideas to drive future income streams.
• Report on the activities and performance of the portfolios to relevant senior internal and external stakeholders, including Boards (CLL and CLG) and committees (EMIRC, ROC, AVWG etc) as appropriate
• Manage the team of senior property professionals to maximise the contribution made by available resources
• Overseeing management of the corporate property estate and the provision of advice to the business

Who You Are

• Successful portfolio management track record, with at least 20 years managing and investing in direct property assets and property related financial structures
• Well respected within the industry with a wide range of broker and other market contacts
• Sufficient experience to confer immediate recognition by the relevant regulatory authority
• Experience managing a team of investment professionals
• Good communicator and strong presentation skills, able to communicate well at Board level (e.g. CLL, CLG and CLAM) and external presentations and pitches


• Good degree in a relevant or numerate subject, or sufficient market experience
• Additional property, postgraduate, or general business related qualification
• CFA or equivalent
• Please note this role falls under SMCR

Benefits of working at Canada Life

We believe in recognising and rewarding our people, so we offer a competitive salary and benefits package that's regularly reviewed. As a Canada Life UK colleague, you'll receive a competitive salary and comprehensive reward package including a generous pension and bonus scheme, along with, income protection, private medical insurance and life assurance. We have a fantastic number of other benefits and support services as well as regular personal and professional development.

How we work at Canada Life

Our culture is unique and incredibly important to us. We care about doing the right thing for our people, customers and community and helping others to build better futures. Our blueprint behaviours shape and influence how we work, and are central to the relationships we have with others. Every day we are encouraged to be more curious, own the outcome, face into things together and find a way forward.

We want colleagues to have rewarding careers with us so we invest in the development of our people, technology and workplaces. That's why we offer a range of training, flexible working and opportunities to grow and develop.

Diversity and inclusion

Building an inclusive workplace with a diverse workforce where everyone can feel they belong and achieve their potential regardless of gender, ethnicity or any other characteristic is a key commitment for us. We are proud of the progress we're making in DEI, and we continue for it to be a significant focus.

"At Canada Life we believe in the power of great people from different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives coming together to build better futures. Emerging talent is crucial to our growth and creating an environment that continues to inspire us all." Nick Harding, Chief People Officer, Canada Life UK

We appreciate that everyone has different work and life responsibilities. We're happy to discuss flexible working arrangements, including part time, for any of our roles should this be a requirement for.

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