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BVK increases UBS multi-manager mandate to €1bn

Germany’s largest pension fund has topped up its commitment to a separate account with UBS’ real estate business by €250m.

Bayerische Versorgungskammer (BVK), Germany’s largest pension fund, has provided UBS Asset Management’s multi-manager business with an extra €250 million, taking its commitment to a mandate it has with the Swiss bank to €1 billion.

The German pension giant originally backed UBS AM’s Global Real Estate – Global Multi-Managers in December 2011, providing an initial €500 million.

It has since then doubled the commitment to the program which sees UBS invest in value-add and opportunistic real estate funds globally, including niche real estate and emerging markets, on behalf of the pension fund.

“This significant additional commitment from BVK is testament to the strong relationship we have fostered since 2011, underpinned by our ability to source attractive investment opportunities, our sustained track record and the resulting growth we have achieved on the client’s behalf,” Eric Byrne, head of global multi-managers & securities, commented.

“Our top-down, research-driven investment philosophy has supported the growth of the GMM platform, which attracted over $1.5 billion of net new client funds in 2015.”

UBS-AM GMM, which has more than €6 billion of assets under management, has more than 40 employees located across five countries.

BVK has been notable in its private real estate activities of late as it bolsters its holdings in the asset class with a flurry of equity commitments.

Back in July, BVK supplied Patrizia Immobilien, the Augsburg-based real estate investment manager, a €400 million check to create a pan-European residential property portfolio. Just weeks earlier, the German pension fund struck a deal with long-term collaborator, Finnish private equity fund CapMan to invest €400 million in Nordic residential markets. In January, BVK teamed up with the European arm of Houston-based fund manager Hines to launch a €1.3 billion separate account program to invest in European high street retail.