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Simo, Head of Capital Markets

Real estate advisor Simo Vilhunen unexpectedly found his passion

Real estate professional Simo Vilhunen's career at Newsec has spanned over more than ten years, and began alongside his master's studies in real estate economics when his fellow students tipped him about a real estate analyst job vacancy In that position, Simo got to know the basics of the real estate industry, as real estate assessments came up at a fast pace on his desk.

After finishing his studies, Simo had the opportunity to transfer in-house to work in the real estate transactions team, where the task was to help international and domestic real estate investors sell and buy real estate in Finland. In his new role, he got right into the heart of the real estate market learning how, for example, domestic and international pension insurance companies and funds evaluate different real estate properties.

Gradually, Simo moved from analysing real estate properties to coordinating real estate advisory projects. Thanks to high-quality work, responsibilities increased and more challenging tasks were offered at a rapid pace, such as acquiring assignments and project management tasks related to real estate transactions. After six years, Simo was invited to become a partner in Newsec. This, in turn, gave him a stronger perspective on the development of the entire company.

"I've never really had time to long for a new role before I´ve been asked to take on new responsibilities," Simo laughs.

The veteran of real estate transactions got a taste of the idea of becoming a manager. One morning in autumn 2018, Simo's supervisor and Newsec's current CEO Mikko Tenhola called and asked if Simo would be interested in taking on yet another role. This time as Mikko’s successor as Director in the Capital Markets team, a team that specialises in advising on real estate transactions for international investors. However, for a long-time real estate professional, the decision to jump into a managerial role was not obvious.

"I wasn't sure if managing people would be my thing. I was hesitant about how the role of manager would affect my job and whether it would take me too far from the real estate transactions," says Simo.

However, there was no need to decide right away, as Mikko presented the opportunity to participate in Newsec's six-month leadership training even before Simo made his final decision. Simo took this opportunity with an open mind and got to learn how the leadership role would shape his everyday life. The training provided new and fascinating perspectives on leadership.

"I liked the fact that Newsec did not offer a ready-made management manual. My task would be to find suitable ways to spar and help the real estate professionals in my team succeed in their everyday work and remove obstacles towards their success," Simo says.

The everyday challenges of real estate transactions were already in Simo's backbone, so he decided to proceed with the application process and was selected for the position.

The rewarding successes of the team. Today, Simo leads the Capital Markets team of more than ten people, consisting of various real estate professionals, such as real estate project managers and analysts. The new role as a manager feels fascinating, and there are plenty of opportunities ahead for professional development.

"Previously, I was strongly motivated by my own personal development, but now supporting the development of my team members has become just as important to me," .

"I enjoy helping others with problems, and hopefully it shows – with customers and now also in my work as a leader " Simo sums up.