The European Public Real Estate Association (EPRA) has appointed Philip Charls (58), currently General Manager of the Dutch Chamber of Commerce for Belgium and Luxembourg, as its new Chief Executive Officer, with effect from October 1st, 2007.
Charls succeeds Nick van Ommen (60) who has led EPRA as Chief Executive Officer since May 2000, following the association's inception in October 1999.
EPRA was established to improve standards of reporting disclosure, ethics, and industry practices, among European listed real estate companies and to lobby on the industry's behalf with governmental and regulatory bodies.
"I am delighted at Philip's appointment and confident he will build on EPRA's success in the future, due to his broad managerial and financial market experience, and through working closely with the association's committees," Van Ommen said.
"The tax harmonisation of Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) between the U.S. and Europe, the planned launch of derivatives on the FTSE/EPRA NAREIT real estate indices this year, and the expansion of cooperation with our partner associations - NAREIT in the U.S. and APREA in Asia, are just some of the key areas we are working on," he added.
Philip Charls has held his position at the Dutch Chamber of Commerce since 2001 and prior to that was Chief Executive Officer of RVS-Insurance Belgium, part of the ING Group, for seven years.
"I'm looking forward to joining such an internationally diverse and dynamic organisation as EPRA, operating in one of the most exciting investment sectors, as the growth in real estate stocks around the world has been phenomenal in recent years. I trust the team will meet to the expectations set by the industry for the coming years," Charls said.
Serge Fautré, Chairman of EPRA and Chief Executive Officer of Belgian real estate company Cofinimmo, paid tribute to Nick van Ommen's stewardship as the first Chief Executive Officer of the association.
"On behalf of the Management Board of EPRA I would like to warmly thank Nick for his leadership during the difficult 'start-up phase' of the organisation. During his tenure EPRA's membership has expanded to over 200, the association's finances are on a sound footing, we have an extremely popular annual conference and, most importantly, he has assisted the listed European property industry in achieving great strides forward," Fautré said.