Cohen & Steers is a global investment manager specializing in liquid real assets, including real estate securities, listed infrastructure, commodities and natural resource equities, as well as preferred securities and other income solutions. The majority of the firm's equity (NYSE: CNS) is owned by the firm's founders and employees. Headquartered in New York City, with offices in London, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seattle, Cohen & Steers serves a wide range of institutional and individual investors through a broad range of investment vehicles. As of December 31, 2016, the firm had US$57.2 billion in assets under management.
Founded in 1986 by Martin Cohen and Robert Steers, Cohen & Steers was the first U.S. investment advisor to focus on real estate securities. As pioneers in the REIT industry, we have been a leader in shaping corporate governance for the REIT industry. Since inception, the firm has recognized the power of real asset strategies that provide the potential for attractive total returns and overall portfolio diversification. Over the years, we strategically launched products that offer these attractive investment characteristics. We started investing in preferred securities in 2003 to complement our real assets offerings. In 2004, we started investing in listed infrastructure to provide investors a value-added approach to investing in global infrastructure -- an asset class historically characterized by attractive and predictable income, strong total returns, low volatility and low correlations to broader equity and fixed income markets. In January 2012, we launched the Cohen & Steers Real Assets Multi-Strategy to offer our clients a turnkey solution to invest in a diversified portfolio of real assets. In April 2013, we added a leading commodities research and investment team to further expand our capabilities in real assets investing. Additionally in July 2013, we launched a global natural resource equities strategy.
Over the years, as Cohen & Steers strategically expanded its investment capabilities, we added experienced, industry-leading professionals to manage these portfolios. With these broad product offerings, Cohen & Steers has a leading role in managing real asset strategies.
Cohen & Steers has a 30-year history of offering new and creative real asset investment solutions for both institutional and retail investors. Our mission is to focus on a select group of real asset products we believe can provide a solid platform of investment solutions for clients. Our goal is to enhance current client relationships and add new institutional and retail clients in a prudent and controlled manner. Research and active portfolio management remain the cornerstones of our investment process, backed by our commitment to deliver superior performance and provide each client with the highest levels of service.