TIAA Real Estate Account Marks 20 Years

Account Offers Benefits of Direct Real Estate Investments to Retirement Savers
New York, NY, December 1, 2015 – The TIAA Real Estate Account  has marked its 20th anniversary, demonstrating TIAA-CREF’s long-standing history in offering distinctive products to retirement savers.  Launched in 1995, the Account is the industry’s largest investment vehicle dedicated to providing individual investors direct access to commercial real estate, enabling portfolio diversification beyond equities and fixed income.
The TIAA Real Estate Account is a variable annuity with over $21 billion in assets under management, and consists primarily of investments in office, industrial, retail and multi-family properties throughout the United States. The Account is accessible to millions of individual investors through their employer’s TIAA-CREF-administered retirement platforms. The Account is distinct in that it offers direct investment exposure to a diversified portfolio of commercial real estate and an investor’s accumulation units in the Account are not priced by the securities markets, whereas shares in real estate investment trusts (REITs) are typically traded on stock exchanges and subject to securities market pricing fluctuations.
“Before we launched the Account two decades ago, this was an asset class that was inaccessible to most investors due to high capital requirements and a lack of liquidity,” said Gerry Casimir, Managing Director and Portfolio Manager for the TIAA Real Estate Account. “However, direct real estate has low correlations to public markets and lower volatility than REITs, which can provide diversification for individual portfolios.”
TIAA-CREF is the third largest manager of worldwide real estate assets*, with more than 60 years of experience in direct real estate investing.  TIAA-CREF believes that its Real Estate Account offers investors a consistent, deliberate investment approach with a focus on high quality investment opportunities, and the ability to identify good relative value over the long-term.  The properties held in the Account are diversified by sector and geography. In addition, the Account offers investors a potential hedge against inflation and the opportunity for favorable long-term returns through rental income and appreciation of commercial real estate.
“The ability to offer our plan participants this distinctive investment option, typically an asset class only available to institutional investors, speaks to our commitment to provide plan sponsors with solutions that drive better outcomes for their participants,” said Teresa Hassara, president of Institutional Retirement at TIAA-CREF. “This investment option comes with strong expertise supporting 401(k), 403(b) and other retirement plan markets and has played an important role in building retirement plan participants’ financial well-being.”
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TIAA-CREF ( is a national financial services organization with $834 billion in total assets under management (as of 9/30/2015) and is the leading provider of retirement services in the academic, research, medical and cultural fields.

About TIAA-CREF Global Real Estate

TIAA-CREF Global Real Estate is the real estate investment and management business of TIAA-CREF and includes the recently acquired London-based pure-play real estate investment management firm TH Real Estate. The combined platform represents one of the largest global real estate players in the world* with approximately $89 billion in assets under management (as of 9/30/2015).