San Francisco-based Digital Realty revealed the appointment of Gregory S. Wright as Chief Investment Officer. In addition, Digital Realty announced the appointment of Mark Smith as Managing Director, Asia Pacific.
Wright will report to Chief Executive Officer A. William Stein and will be responsible for spearheading Digital Realty’s capital allocation activities. Smith will report to Chief Financial Officer Andrew P. Power and will be responsible for overseeing Digital Realty’s operations in the Asia Pacific region. Smith will begin his new role in December 2018 and Mr. Wright will join Digital Realty in January 2019.
“Greg’s extensive strategic financial advisory experience across real estate, infrastructure and other related sectors makes him a strong addition to our team,” said Mr. Stein. “In his capacity as an external advisor, his strategic and financial expertise have been integral to the execution of transactions that have been truly transformational for Digital Realty. He served as lead M&A advisor on our $1.9 billion acquisition of Telx and our $7.8 billion merger with DuPont Fabros as well as our recent $1.8 billion Ascenty acquisition. We are confident that his unique combination of financial expertise and intimate familiarity with our business and team will prove invaluable as we continue to build upon this positive momentum in the years ahead.”
Mr. Wright commented, “I am honored to be named Digital Realty’s Chief Investment Officer, and eager to begin working with this world-class company on a deeper level. Digital Realty is known as an industry leader, and I look forward to working with my new colleagues to support the strategic expansion of the Digital Realty platform around the globe.”
Mr. Wright joins Digital Realty with significant investment banking experience, most recently as Co-Head of Americas Real Estate and Managing Director of the Real Estate, Gaming & Lodging Group at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. During his tenure at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Mr. Wright provided strategic and financial advice to clients across a broad spectrum of real estate, infrastructure and related sectors, including Digital Realty.
Mr. Wright’s notable engagements include advising Equity Office Properties Trust on its sale to funds managed by The Blackstone Group, The JBG Companies on its merger with Vornado Realty Trust’s Washington, D.C. business and DCT Industrial Trust on its sale to Prologis, Inc. In addition, he advised Douglas Emmett, Paramount Group, Inc. and Americold Realty Trust on their respective groundbreaking initial public offerings. Prior to his time at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Mr. Wright served as a Managing Director in the Real Estate & Lodging Group at Citigroup where he was responsible for originating and executing strategic advisory assignments and general client coverage. Prior to Citigroup, Mr. Wright worked at Trammell Crow Company in Washington, D.C. where he was a member of the finance team responsible for acquisitions, dispositions, and joint ventures as well as construction and permanent financings across multiple product types including industrial, office and retail. Mr. Wright received a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of Maryland and an MBA from the University of Michigan.
“We are excited to welcome Mark Smith to the Digital Realty team,” said Mr. Power. “Mark has demonstrated significant business leadership in the Asia Pacific region, including spearheading prominent companies’ cloud services growth. Given his deep institutional expertise, we expect Mark will be instrumental in driving our key strategic initiatives in this critical region.”
Mr. Smith said, “Digital Realty has established itself as the pre-eminent provider of high-quality data center and colocation solutions across the globe. I look forward to joining Digital Realty and helping this outstanding global company capitalize on the many opportunities in the rapidly evolving and fast-growing APAC market.”
Mr. Smith joins Digital Realty with extensive industry experience and well over two decades of experience in Asia, most recently as Managing Director, Asia at Zettagrid where he actively explored new growth opportunities throughout the region. Previously, Mr. Smith served as Managing Director, Cloud Services, Asia Pacific and Japan at VMware where he was responsible for managing the Cloud Services Business, including a network of over 600 service providers, and also led the launch of VMware’s public cloud offering in Asia Pacific. Prior to VMware, Mr. Smith led Asia Pacific for CenturyLink and Savvis Communications.