So far this month we have seen several reports of LPs looking to sell private equity fund stakes on the secondary market. OMERS, the $43 billion pension fund, is considering selling private equity fund interests on the secondary market in a plan to reduce its investments with external GPs and increase its allocation to direct investments. The pension fund will, however, only consider doing so if pricing of funds being sold on the secondary market improves.
In addition to this, Swiss Re has begun the process of selling its stakes in private equity real estate funds. The insurance company has sold its $40 million interest in Colony Distressed Credit Fund to Fresno County Employees' Retirement Association. Fresno County is also expected to make a $4 million commitment to Colony Distressed Debt Fund. Wurts & Associates negotiated the purchase for the pension fund.
Also on the sell side, in an attempt to rebalance its portfolio after the financial crisis and to obtain some returns as secondary market offerings improve, Employees' Retirement System of Rhode Island is considering selling fund interests on the secondary market. The pension fund may become involved on the other side of the secondary market as it is also considering buying fund interests and investing in secondaries funds.
Separately, fund of funds manager Rho Fund Investors has commenced fundraising for its first secondaries fund. RFI Venture Secondaries has a target of $200 million and will aim to deploy 80-90% of this capital to venture opportunities, with the remainder going towards technology-orientated buyout opportunities.
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