Carlyle wants $1 bln of Japan elderly homes, eyes REIT

HONG KONG Wed Feb 20, 2008 10:48pm EST

HONG KONG Feb 21 (Reuters) - U.S. private equity firm Carlyle Group wants to build a portfolio of homes for the elderly in Japan worth up to $1 billion that could be spun off into a real estate investment trust (REIT) in a couple of years.

Rio Minami, head of Carlyle Japan Real Estate, said the firm wanted to build and buy between 20 and 30 elderly residences over the next two to three years, growing the collection to as much as $1 billion from about $250 million now.

"Once the portfolio reaches a size of around $500 million or $1 billion, there should be an opportunity for us to potentially transform it into a senior housing J-REIT," he said in a telephone interview from Tokyo.

(Reporting by Dominic Whiting; Editing by Anne Marie Roantree)

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