Is my CRE experience in a 3rd world country valid?

I just finished my second year in one of Russel group unis. Originally, I am from a Central Asian country, so after being quite unsuccessful in securing an internship in the UK I started applying for roles in my home country. I got a position in one of the top 3 CRE companies here as an advisory and Valuation Analyst. The way I see it, the amount of responsibility I got from day one here has been amazing and I got quite a bit of experience working on various deals here for around 6 months now. I guess my question is this: how relevant do you think my experience working here would be when applying for graduate roles in CRE or consulting in London after graduation next year? Any real life examples or personal experiences are welcome, I'm just realy trying to gauge the situation here.

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Jul 20, 2021 - 11:29am

Info overload incoming :)

I have a friend who went to work in Capital markets at JLL in Dubai and transitioned into their team in Singapore due to a client of theirs. He then tried to move into the UK for a long time but struggled due to his lack of European exposure & Experience (Plus sponsorship and all of that - He was from South Africa like me).

Best advise he gave is that experience in a big market trumps experience at a top 3 CRE company. Real Estate is all about local knowledge and local connections, and that's best achieved being in the market with actual deal experience. He eventually got in through the same client starting a new fund in the UK. 

Another great example is me - I worked for CBRE Southern Africa then transitioned to one of the largest PERE funds in South Africa (Through my connections i made at CBRE) However getting a job in the UK & Abroad has been almost impossible (It is do able, but hard).. 1) I need sponsorship and they will only offer that if you show specific value add to the country you want to move to & 2) I need local experience! & doing deals in South Africa (Or a 3rd world country). has no cross over with networks in Europe & UK

My advise is to get a masters in the UK or Europe, which will set you up nicely for a transition into Europe. Most of my colleagues went this route, and i am thinking about doing the same.

Another alternative to the above is to look for funds that operate in Europe but were started by people from your home country. In South Africa we have very strong routes to the UK, so approaching them would maybe be a better option. 


Jul 23, 2021 - 5:15am

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