Big Apple Seeks Emerging, Minority-Owned Private Equity Managers

Oct 31 2007 | 10:28am ET

This week, emerging managers and minority-owned private equity firms looking for a slice of the institutional investor market got some good news from the Big Apple. New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said the state’s Common Retirement Fund is increasing its private equity commitments to these managers to $1 billion over the next several years.

The fund’s emerging manager private equity program began in 2005 and is currently managed by Aldus Equity Partners, a fund-of-funds manager with a mandate to identify emerging managers that offer attractive investment opportunities. The fund will be conducting a search to select one or more fund-of-funds managers to implement its $1 billion commitment.
“This unprecedented commitment by the fund is a direct result of the outstanding opportunity emerging managers offer,” said DiNapoli, who is sole trustee of New York State’s $154.5 billion fund. “One of my top priorities has been to expand the diversity of our manager pools. The firms in our emerging manager program, the majority of which are women- and minority-owned, have proven to be more entrepreneurial, focusing on smaller ends of the market. These investments have created a stabilizing force for the fund.”

Currently, the fund has committed $475 million to its private equity emerging manager program, and has made more than $826 million in commitments to women- and minority-owned firms. For the 2007 fiscal year, the fund’s private equity portfolio returned 28.7%, compared to its overall 12.58% return.

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