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Oxford Properties revamps global leadership team and brings in Dean Hopkins as COO to accelerate digital innovation

Changes create a simplified leadership structure to align with Oxford’s global growth strategy; Chad Remis and Eric Plesman now lead firm’s growing North American business

August 15, 2019

TORONTO

Oxford Properties Group ("Oxford"), a leading global commercial real estate investor, developer and manager, announces a series of changes to its leadership team and the appointment of Dean Hopkins as Chief Operations Officer ('COO'). The changes come at a time of rapid worldwide growth for Oxford, which grew its assets under management (‘AUM’) by a third last year. By simplifying its leadership structure, it aligns Oxford’s leadership group with its global growth strategy as the company continues to diversify across asset classes and geographies. Hopkins appointment as COO brings invaluable C-Suite tech experience to its leadership team as Oxford adopts a digital first strategy in its approach to property, facility and asset management.

Within the changes, Eric Plesman and Chad Remis now lead Oxford’s North American business and have been appointed to the Executive Leadership Team as Executive Vice Presidents, North America. Aligning leadership to strategic growth areas, Chad Remis will be responsible for Oxford’s North American office, residential and hotels businesses, with Eric Plesman leading its investments, development, retail and industrial businesses in North America.

As part of the reorganization, Jo McNamara becomes Managing Director, Head of Europe, and David Matheson takes the role of Managing Director, Head of Asia Pacific. The company recently entered the Asia Pacific market in late 2018 via its A$4.5 billion take-private acquisition of Investa Office Fund, a leading ASX listed office REIT.

“This new structure is all about creating a scalable and agile business as we continue on our journey of global growth,” commented Michael Turner, President of Oxford. “These organizational changes simplify our leadership structure and align it to our growth strategy. Over the past year, we’ve entered into new markets, increased our diversification across both geographies and asset classes and built a platform that now spans four continents. The new structure allows us to pair the advantages of a worldwide platform with the benefits of local expertise and talent.”

After an extensive global search, Dean Hopkins joins Oxford as global COO. An appointment from outside the real estate industry, he most recently served as the CEO of scaleup innovation hub, OneEleven. Prior to that, Dean spent 12 years leading global transformation programs for information giant Thomson Reuters. 

“Be it the Internet of Things, AI or Augmented Analytics, the commercial real estate industry is primed for disruption, yet there is a dearth of C-Suite level tech experience across our industry. Dean’s appointment brings us valuable expertise as we continue to not only harness the power of technology to transform the way our customers interact with real estate, but also to transform our own ways of working as we become increasingly global,” added Turner.

Hopkins’s appointment will accelerate the company adoption of a digital first strategy. Oxford believes there is vast potential to utilize technology to transform the development process as well as property and asset management. It currently has a number of these initiatives underway including the creating of digital twins of new buildings to run complex predictive modelling to create efficiencies during the development process, building operations and a continual optimization of the customer experience.

Within the changes to the North American leadership group, Chad Remis has responsibility for Oxford’s North American office, residential and hotels business, and leads the following team:

  • Andrew McAllan, Head of Office, Canada;
  • Chris Mundy, newly appointed Head of Office, U.S.; and
  • Tyler Seaman, Head of Residential & Hotels.

Eric Plesman has overall responsibility for the company’s investments, development, retail and industrial businesses in North America, and leads the following team:

  • Bradley Jones, Head of Retail;
  • Dean Shapiro, Head of Development, U.S. & Hudson Yards;
  • Jeff Miller, Head of Industrial, Canada;
  • Kevin Egan, newly appointed Head of Investments, North America; and
  • Mark Cote, Head of Development, Canada.

The reorganization reflects the rapid global growth of Oxford’s business over the last 10 years, during which time the balance of its portfolio held outside Canada has risen from just 15% of its AUM to now approximately 55%. Oxford first entered the U.S. market in 2010 and has since amassed approximately US$15 billion of assets. In 2018, Oxford launched its ‘beds and sheds’ strategy to meaningfully expand its exposure to the multifamily and logistics sectors. It has since tripled its industrial AUM while increasing its residential AUM by 150%.