News in brief

• Morgan Stanley is close to raising US$6bn for a new global property fund, falling short of its earlier target of US$10bn, sources with direct knowledge of the plan said. The bank reduced its fundraising target late last year due to the poor global market environment, sources said. Fundraising for the new real estate fund is expected to be completed soon. The Morgan Stanley Real Estate Fund VII Global, the latest in the Wall Street bank’s series of international property investment funds, began raising money from institutional investors in early 2008.

• Olswang today announced that from 1 May 2009, a team of 2 partners and 9 associates from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer will join its Berlin office focusing on real estate. Olswang has focussed on the technology, media and real estate sectors in Berlin since its office opened in 2007. The team from Freshfields’ Berlin office is led by partners Christian Schede and Martin Wiemann, who specialise in real estate M&A and real estate finance (including restructuring), plus Peter Schorling (specialising in corporate M&A and joint ventures) who will be made up to partner on joining Olswang.