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Global Management Survey

Proprietary research benchmarking the organizational, financial and governance metrics of real estate investment management firms.


The Survey has more than a decade of data collection and covers more than 65 individual data points, including, but not limited to:


Capital raising and net and gross AUM growth year-over-year, new commitment trends, investor concentration ratios, use of daily-valued private RE vehicles, dry powder and subs lines, leverage use, acquisition & disposition volumes and revenues.


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The 2023 Survey was completed by 83 companies between March 2023 and June 2023 – and reports on operational activity during 2022.

Just over 93% of firms have offices in the US, while 42% of firms are global and 31% have offices respectively in Continental Europe and Asia. The median employee count is 105 FTEs, excluding property management, while the median gross AUM is $10.6 billion. The median firm revenue is $49 million, excluding incentive fees and real estate investment income.

So, what’s the story in 2023?

#1. More



A special analysis of the GMS Survey reveals that same-store survey participants have reduced headcount by 29% across five key functional areas in the past six years alone. Capital raising professionals led the efficiency charge, closely followed by asset and portfolio management teams. It comes as managers face increased pressure on revenues and margins amid slowing AUM growth.



In 2022, the median investment management firm reported net AUM growth of 7% – a pace of growth 50% less than 2021 and 170 bps below the annual AUM growth reported over the prior five years. According to the 2023 Survey - which aggregates financial performance for the 2022 calendar year - just 68% of firms increased their net AUM year-over-year. That is down from 86% of firms reporting net AUM increases in 2021.



To account for slowing AUM growth and preserve the organizational efficiencies realized over the past six years, investment managers have tempered their forecasts around organizational growth. As firms consider staffing levels in 2023, 38% expected flat or reduced headcount by year-end, compared to a year ago when only 20% expected flat or decreased FTEs in 2022.



Real estate investment managers reported a slight increase in post-incentive EBITDA margins in 2022 when assessed on a same-store basis, however it was a data point tempered by the fact that almost four out of 10 firms also reported declining margins, offering a potential preview of what’s to come in 2023.

Important 2024 update: 


From 2024, the Global Management Survey will be open to non-NAREIM members. All real estate investment management firms are able to participate. To get involved in 2024, email Zoe Hughes.

Expenses & Organizational Metrics:

Headcount growth, employees per $1bn AUM, employee breakdowns per function, per function and seniority, including portfolio management, asset management and acquisitions. Span of controls, turnover and layoffs, valuation policies, functional group trends - ESG, Data Strategy, Asset Management​ and more.


Financial Metrics:

YOY financial performance, EBITDA (pre- and post-bonus) margins, bonus pools, revenue and expense breakdowns, treatment of fund-level expenses.

Alternate years: Fund/Account T&Cs:

Target returns, asset management fees, acquisition & disposition fees, fee prevalence, promote/carried interest trends, promote catch-ups, GP co-investments, fund employees.

Alternate years: Governance:

Composition of executive committees, board of directors, management committees and investment committees; IC deal flow, voting and decision trends; SEC registration and audit frequency.














NAREIM members participating in the Global Management Survey can access the full report through the Ferguson Partners member portal. NAREIM members can access a detailed executive summary through the link above. Note, access is restricted to designated personnel of NAREIM member firms only and Executive Officers.

2023 GMS Survey RESULTS:
Out now

83 companies participated in the 2023 Global Management Survey, conducted between March and June 2023. Key takeaways included:



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