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Brass targets $100m for first blind pool fund

The San Antonio, Texas-based real estate investment firm will focus on distressed US property sellers in states such as Texas, Colorado and Florida.

Brass Real Estate Funds is raising its first blind pool private equity real estate vehicle, targeting $100 million of equity commitments.

The San Antonio, Texas-based firm will focus on financially distressed assets across the US, and particularly in states such as Texas, Colorado, Utah and Florida.

Brass Real Estate has previously raised funds to invest in specific value-added projects, however the Brass Market Opportunity Fund will be its first blind pool vehicle.

Founded by chairman and chief executive officer Rick Rodriguez in 1996, Brass Real Estate Funds now has around $200 million of assets under management. It is backed by the Magi Group of Real Estate Service Companies, which Rodriguez also formed .

Mike Dancey, director of investor services, told PERE the fund was expected to close around September. The firm was also not expecting to make significant investments until at least the third quarter, with most of the opportunities coming in late 2009, 2010 and even into 2011.

“This is an amazing time to be looking to invest,” Dancey said. “We will be concentrating on financially distressed assets, particularly where the sellers need to exit their investments. There is a lot of property out there in pretty good shape, but are being sold because of cash-flow needs.”