Merrill Lynch plans Turkish fund

The US bank is on the fundraising trail again as a previous $1bn vehicle nears completion, according to a report.

Merrill Lynch is planning to raise a fresh real estate fund targeting Turkey, according to Reuters.

Kubilay Cinemre, the head of Merrill Lynch’s operation in the country, gave no details on the possible size of a new vehicle but it would follow another real estate fund worth $1 billion (€641 million) launched just over a year ago.

“We launched a $1 billion real estate fund 14 months ago, and we're about to complete that fund. We're continuing work on raising another fund,” Cinemre is reported to have said.

Private equity firms are continuing to invest in the country, with Apollo Real Estate Advisors having recently acquired seven properties in a joint venture with fellow US firm Taurus.

Real estate in Turkey has boomed in recent years, says the Reuters report, helped by a fast-growing population, economic growth averaging seven percent a year since 2001, foreign investment and the start of European Union membership talks.