In profile: Knight Frank Head of APAC, Kevin Coppel

In profile: Knight Frank Head of APAC, Kevin Coppel
In profile: Knight Frank Head of APAC, Kevin Coppel

NAME: Kevin Coppel

In profile: Knight Frank Head of APAC, Kevin Coppel

POSITION: Regional Head, Asia Pacific

COMPANY: Knight Frank Asia Pacific

OFFICE LOCATION: Singapore (Knight Frank Asia Pacific is the headquarters in Asia Pacific)

How long have you been in the industry?

I have been working in the professional services sector for about 25 years, of which eight years (and counting) have been in real estate.

What’s happening in the area you specialise in?

Market performance across the Asia Pacific region is quite mixed. For example, the east coast of Australia and Japan remain strong with considerable buying interest; whilst the Southeast Asian markets are struggling.

For Asian real estate investors, there remains significant interest in purchasing trophy assets (residential and commercial) in gateway cities in the UK, US and Australia.

At the same time, technology is becoming increasingly important in everything we do, bringing about technology-enabled offices which drives activity-based working. Knight Frank Sydney has recently been transformed into a new agile workplace which we believe will create more flexibility for our staff and improve collaboration.

Describe the most interesting commercial property you have worked on?

In my role I am more focused on client relationships than individual properties or portfolios.    

What I am noticing is that our clients are increasingly regional or global in the way they operate and make decisions.  In order to serve our clients effectively, we need to be able to mirror that in terms of the way we work.

Today, Knight Frank has 417 offices across 58 countries. In Asia Pacific alone, we have 57 offices in 13 countries. Hence, it is important that the region is actively communicating and sharing information in order to increase cross-border collaboration and provide the sort of seamless service our clients expect.

What are the ingredients to being successful in your job?

My ingredient mix for success:

  • Listening well
  • Patience
  • Communicate clearly
  • Ability to articulate the firm’s strategy and how each employee fits into the bigger picture
  • Project energy despite limited sleep after a long haul flight; you cannot let jetlag get the better of you
  • Not taking yourself too seriously
  • Carefully managing consumption of food and alcohol and doing plenty of exercise

What aspects of your role do you enjoy the most?

My top 3 favourites:

  • Meeting with clients and visiting offices in the region to catch up with the local teams
  • The privilege of travelling around the region and experiencing different food, cultures and office dynamics
  • Getting home to my family after a business trip 

Where would you invest a spare A$750,000?

I would focus on residential opportunity in “brownfield” city fringe areas likely to be gentrified, concentrating on gateway cities in Asia Pacific. 

Which football team do you support?

Many – it depends on what football code you are talking about.

My pick:

  • Rugby:  NSW Waratahs and Wallabies.  
  • AFL: Sydney Swans.  
  • NFL: New England Patriots.  
  • EPL: Man Utd.  
  • League: Sydney FC.   
  • NRL:  Manly Warringah

What’s your favourite app or techno gadget?

Favourite gadget: Bluetooth headphones for jogging

Favourite app: 

Seasonal: RWC 2015 (Rugby World Cup)

All-time: My Flights (tracks all of my flights); I am also an avid user of podcasts

How do you use social media?

  • LinkedIn – via sharing updates and publishing pulse posts
  • Facebook – to follow what my children are doing; but I’m not a big fan of posting 
  • WhatsApp – at present, I have approximately 40 active Chats groups across work, family, hobbies and sports
Commercial Property Apac

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