2011 Milken Institute Summit
Chief Executive, Derwent London
John Burns is chief executive of Derwent London PLC, the largest Central London—focused REIT. Renowned as leading investors and developers of commercial property, Derwent London is contributing to London's revitalization by creating award-winning, design-led, quality working environments. Burns began his career at Hillier Parker (now CB Richard Ellis). In 1973, he purchased his own estate agency; a decade later, he made the strategic move from agency to client side. Acquiring control of the Derwent Valley Light Railway Company (capitalized at £1.5 million), he restructured that business, assembled a talented team of professionals and grew the company to its current leading position. The 2007 merger with London Merchant Securities saw the formation of Derwent London. A former chairman of the Westminster Property Association, Burns sits on the strategic board of the New West End Company, serves as a council member of the British Property Federation and is involved with various charitable organizations.