Real estate investment manager and TIAA company Nuveen Real Estate announced the launch of a new global impact investing sector, aimed at providing strategies addressing critical social and environmental sustainability issues, including inequality and climate change. With the new launch, Nuveen appointed Nadir Settles as Global Head of Impact Investing.

Nuveen said that it sees an opportunity for the strategy to support up to $15 billion in real estate AUM by 2026.

Abigail Dean, Global Head of Strategic Insights at Nuveen, said:

“Around the world we see a trend toward real estate as an effective tool for positive change for communities. Working as partners, local communities and real estate owners can meet shared objectives and tackle local challenges, from sustainability and mitigating climate risk, to healthcare, housing, and social exclusion. The built environment offers an exciting opportunity to deliver measurable impact across a range of assets, projects and locations.”

Under the new strategy, Nuveen Real Estate will invest in early-stage projects, taking an impact-led approach to increasing the supply of social and affordable housing, and targeting low-income and disadvantaged populations. The framework will also focus on regeneration projects within healthcare, education, and transportation services.

Additionally, the mandate aims to support Nuveen’s commitment, announced last year, to achieve net zero carbon across its real estate portfolio by 2040.

Settles joined Nuveen in 2011, and has been serving as Managing Director since 2018, responsible for all aspects of New York office real estate investments. In his new role, he will lead an international team across the U.S., Europe and APAC in identifying and pursuing relevant real estate impact investments, while growing the overall sector. Nuveen also announced the appointment of Pamela West as Senior Portfolio Manager, Impact Investing.

Chris McGibbon, Global Head of Real Estate at Nuveen, said:

“Nuveen is a pioneer in impact investing and we are competitively positioned to deliver a market-leading sector globally and at scale. Under Nadir and Pamela’s leadership, I am confident that this new sector will address some of the most pressing challenges in local real estate across the globe, while creating an avenue for investors to have a significant impact through their capital investment.”

Settles added:

“By leveraging Nuveen Real Estate’s industry expertise, we are going beyond just affordable housing to focus our attention on community revitalization. We see an immediate opportunity to scale our strategy and leverage our leading position in the industry to support tenant well-being and create a more sustainable future. I am honored to have been chosen to lead such a significant sector.”