BMO Commercial Property

Richard Kirby

Director, Property Funds

Richard Kirby, joined the predecessor to the BMO Asset Management (Holdings) plc group ('BMO') in 1990. He has been a fund manager since 1995 and has experience of managing commercial property portfolios across all sectors for open-ended, closed-ended and life fund clients. He sits on both the Executive Committee and Investment Committee of BMO REP Asset Management plc ('BMO REP'). He is a Chartered Surveyor and a member of the Investment Property Forum, the British Council of Offices and Revo.

Matt Howard

Deputy Fund Manager

Joined BMO REP in July 2017. He is Fund Manager of the Royal Sun Alliance Shareholders Real Estate Fund which is managed by BMO REP while also supporting Richard Kirby on the management of the Company. He joined BMO REP from Hermes Investment Management where he spent the past six years. He sits on the Investment Committee of BMO REP, is a Chartered Surveyor and also holds a Certificate in Investment Management.

The trust is a vehicle for investors who wish to gain exposure to prime UK commercial property. It is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index and aims to provide shareholders with an attractive level of income together with the potential for capital and income growth from investing in a diversified UK commercial property portfolio. Dividends are paid monthly.


The Company’s investment objective is to provide ordinary shareholders with an attractive level of income together with the potential for capital and income growth from investing in a diversified UK commercial property portfolio. 

Investment Policy

The Company’s policy is to hold a diversified portfolio of freehold and long leasehold (over 60 years remaining at the time of acquisition) UK commercial properties. It invests principally in three commercial property sectors: office, retail and industrial. It also has an exposure to the alternative sector, including leisure, residential property and student housing.

The Company invests in properties which the Board, on the advice of the Managers, believes will generate a combination of long-term growth in income and capital for shareholders. Investment decisions are based on an analysis of, amongst other things, prospects for future income and capital growth, sector and geographic prospects, tenant covenant strength, lease length, and initial and equivalent yields.

Investment risks are spread by investing across different geographical areas and sectors and by letting properties to lower risk tenants. The Company has not set any maximum geographic exposures, but the maximum weightings in the principal property sectors at any time (states as a percentage of total assets) are: office: 50 per cent; retail: 65 per cent; and industrial: 40 per cent. No single property may exceed 15 per cent of total assets and the five largest properties (excluding indirect property funds) may not exceed 40 per cent of total assets (in each case at the time of acquisition). Short leasehold properties (with less than 60 years remaining) may not exceed 10 per cent of total assets at the time of acquisition.

The Company is permitted to invest up to 15 per cent, at the time of acquisition, of its total assets in indirect property funds (including listed property companies) which invest principally in UK property, but these investments may not exceed 20 per cent of total assets at any subsequent date. the Company is permitted to invest cash, held by it for working capital purposes and awaiting investment, in cash deposits, gilts and money market funds.

The Company uses gearing throughout the Group to enhance returns over the long-term which are subject to covenant tests set, all of which are comfortably met. Gearing, represented by borrowings as a percentage of total assets, may not exceed 50 per cent. However, the Board’s present intention is that borrowings of the Group will be limited to a maximum of 35 per cent of total assets at the time of borrowing.

Investment Risks

The value of your investments and any income from them can go down as well as up and you may not get back the original amount invested. The value of property reflects the opinion of valuers and is reviewed periodically. These assets can also be illiquid and significant or persistent redemptions may require the manager to sell properties at a lower market value adversely affecting the value of your investment. A fund investing in a specific country carries a greater risk than a fund diversified across a range of countries. Gearing is used for investment purposes to obtain, increase or reduce exposure to an asset, index or investment. The use of gearing can enhance returns to investors in a rising market, but if the market falls the losses may be greater.

Fund Facts and Key Dates

Fund Facts

Investment manager
BMO Investment Business Limited
Launch date
Total assets
£1,321.4 million (as at 30.09.21)
Ticker symbol

Key Dates

Annual general meeting
Year end
31 December
Dividend payment date(s)

Sustainability and ESG

Environmental, Social and Governance (“ESG”) issues are the three central factors in measuring sustainability and can present both opportunities and threats to the long-term investment performance the Company aims to deliver to Shareholders. The Board is therefore committed to taking a responsible approach to ESG matters. There are two strands to this approach. The Company’s own responsibilities on matters such as governance and the impact it has through the investments that are made on its behalf by its Manager.

Find out more about our approach to sustainability and ESG issues here

The Board

Paul Marcuse FRICS


Paul Marcuse has approximately 40 years’ experience in the real estate and finance sectors. He was Head of Global Real Estate at UBS Global Asset Management between 2007 and 2012. Prior to this, he was Chief Executive of AXA Real Estate Investment Managers.

Trudi Clark ACA

Independent non-executive director and Chairman of the Audit Committee

Trudi Clark is a former Chief Executive Officer of Schroders (C.I.) Limited and has over 25 years’ experience in the financial services industry. She is a non-executive director of a number of Guernsey based funds and companies.

John Wythe

Independent non-executive Director

John Wythe has approximately 40 years' experience in the real estate industry and was until Dec 2010, a Director and Head of Fund Management of Prudential Property Investment Managers Limited, now M&G Real Estate. He has been a Board member of the Church Commissioners and is currently Chairman of the Trustees of The Portman Estate and has a number of other Non-Executive appointment, primarily involving real estate.

Linda Wilding

Independent non-executive director

Linda Wilding qualified as a chartered accountant with Ernst & Young, before working in the private equity division of Mercury Asset Management from 1989 to 2002, rising to the position of Managing Director. She has served as a non-executive director (including as chairman) on the boards of a number of companies. She is currently a non-executive director of UDG Healthcare plc, Wesleyan Assurance Society and Electra Private Equity plc. She was a non-executive director and latterly chair on Corin plc from 2006 to 2012 and was senior independent director of Touchstone Innovations plc until 2017.

Hugh-Scott Barrett

Senior Independent Director

Hugh Scott-Barrett has experience at board level for over twenty years across real estate, asset management, and banking. He was Non-Executive Chairman at Capital & Regional plc until May 2020 and was Chief Executive of the Company prior to this from 2008-2017. He was previously a member of ABN AMRO’s managing board serving as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer and before that worked at SBC Warburg and Kleinwort Benson.

How to invest

Invest with BMO

BMO offer a range of cost-effective savings plans designed to make it easy for you to invest in our range of funds.

Starting from £25 per month or a lump sum of £100, with the flexibility to start and stop contributions whenever you want.

There are no dealing charges on investments made online or through a monthly direct debit.

Invest with a broker

You can invest through your usual financial adviser, or through a wide range of companies.

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