Defensive Opportunity

George Ajaka

Managing Partner, Investments

BCom Actuarial, App.Fin, Member AIAA

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George became Managing Partner of White & Partners investments across equity and debt in 2016. He has over 13 years of experience in sourcing and managing real estate investments. George joined White & Partners in 2007 following four years at Towers Watson and KPMG Actuaries. With an Actuarial background, George’s numeric skills allow him not only to develop sophisticated financial valuation and risk models, but assess property investments from both a qualitative and quantitative perspective. George has extensive experience in property development, finance and deal structuring along with property disposal strategies across retail, residential, hotel/pubs and industrial sectors. George is a member of the Institute of Actuaries of Australia and is responsible for the performance of White & Partners Investments.

Stephen Girdis

Chairman of the Debt Management Investment Committee


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Stephen has over 30 years experience in real estate asset management, financing, development, investment banking and chartered accounting, mainly at the Macquarie Group. He has held various senior positions including Executive Director of the Group, Global Head of Real Estate and Chairman of Real Estate, including serving as Chairman and Director of related ASX and SGX listed entities. During his leadership, global assets under management (including partnerships) grew tenfold to over $A30 billion. He was closely involved with the growth of Macquarie’s Asian real estate platforms, including joint ventures with Wanda Group, Munich Re, Pacific Star, Goodman Asia, and Pan Asian real estate private equity investment through MGPA and Schroders Asia property. Since retiring from Macquarie in 2012 he has been co-investing with and/or advising Australasian real estate companies.

James Hodgkinson

Debt Management Investment Committee Member


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James has deep real estate experience across all sectors having worked as a principal in the establishment and growth of the Macquarie Group’s Real Estate Investment Management business where he was an Executive Director and Business Head. Over his 16 years in this business James successfully led transactions in many aspects of the real estate value chain across multiple sectors in Australia, Asia and the United States.

Steven Bougoukas

Executive Director

BEc (Economics / Finance)

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Steven has over 16 years in real estate finance experience across all sectors including office, retail, hotels, residential, land & industrial. He has been involved in major transactions across development & project finance, acquisitions and refinancing. Steven held various senior roles within ANZ Banking Group’s Property division with his last role overseeing the Corporate Property team across NSW, ACT QLD & NT. During his time at ANZ, Steven was involved in managing some of the largest property groups including various listed REITs, international investors and private property development group. Steven’s most recent role prior to joining White & Partners, was a Senior Director within CBRE’s Debt & Structured Finance team where he was responsible for commercial debt origination, debt advisory and development funding. In this role he worked with international banks, non-bank lenders including US/UK Insurance Companies and Listed Japanese Securities Firms. Steven also is a lecturer at the University of NSW for the Property Finance & Investment course.

David Mao

Executive Director

BCom, BLaw, MFin, Member ICAA

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Prior to joining White & Partners in 2016, David worked for Greenstone Partners (corporate finance) and Macquarie Capital (real estate investment banking). David has experience in financial valuation, deal structuring and due diligence. David is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia.

Jamie Hughes

Finance Manager

BA (Hons), ICAEW Professional Accountancy Certificate

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Jamie joined White & Partners in 2017 having spent three years with LaSalle Investment Management, a leading real estate investment management firm. Prior to this Jamie worked for Ernst & Young after relocating from the UK and having had several years of experience within the accountancy profession. Jamie began his career in London and worked for one of the largest European accounting firms where he had a key focus on the funds management industry. Jamie oversees the financial management and financial reporting of the White & Partners corporate entities and investment trusts and, in doing so, works closely with the various teams.

Matthew Budden

Head of International Capital Markets

LLB, Admitted in HCA and HCHK

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Matthew is a principal within White & Partners. He has 18 years of experience in Asian investment banking, the last seven as Deputy General Counsel of JP Morgan Hong Kong, the leading Asia-Pacific legal team in corporate derivatives, structured products and prime services with experience in coordinating industry discussions on key regulatory consultations. Prior to JP Morgan, Matthew spent five years with the Bank of China International (BOCI) group developing the Chinese capital markets, RMB internationalisation, pre-IPO financing and share placements. Matthew advised BOCI on HK government’s inaugural HKD20B sovereign bond and BOC’s USD11.5B global H-share offering. Matthew also worked for six years with the Mitsubishi – UFJ Group on capital markets transactions in Singapore, China, Korea and South East Asia, arranging sovereign loans, currency and interest rate swaps and debt restructurings.