Taurus’s debut fund now 70% deployed – Exclusive

The Boston-based private equity real estate firm extols the virtues of being ‘a closer, not a negotiator’ as it acquires its first new investment for the Taurus US Logistics Fund I it raised in June.

Taurus Investment Holdings has invested nearly 70 percent of the capital in its debut real estate fund, Taurus US Logistics Fund I, in approximately five months, PERE has learned.

The Boston-based private equity real estate firm has deployed the majority of Fund I’s capital following the recent acquisitions of two large industrial portfolios in Atlanta. One portfolio, comprising 18 buildings totaling approximately 1 million square feet, was purchased from Colony NorthStar for $72 million, using $15 million in equity from the fund and $15.1 million in equity from the sidecar.

Meanwhile, Taurus also bought another pool of assets encompassing 1.7 million square feet across 20 buildings from Huntington Industrial Partners for $87.25 million, with $8 million in equity from the sidecar and $27.6 million in equity from the fund.

The acquisitions represent Taurus’s first new purchases through the fund, which was raised for value-added logistics investments in US cities. In June, the firm bought a 2.7 million square foot portfolio of five US logistics properties in Atlanta; greater Providence, Rhode Island; and Memphis, Tennessee, for a total of $150 million, with $60 million in equity coming from Fund I. Those properties, however, were purchased from Taurus affiliates – which had originally acquired the buildings from 2012 to 2015 – as seed assets for Fund I.

In April, Taurus held a final close for Fund I, raising $157 million of discretionary capital from a number of Middle Eastern family offices, which are new clients for the firm. Additionally, Taurus and a number of existing high-net-worth investors committed up to $100 million in a sidecar vehicle to invest along the fund.

To date, Taurus has invested $103 million or 67 percent, of Fund I’s capital. The firm currently has $54 million left in the fund to invest, and plans to match the fund investments with an equal amount in sidecar capital. Taurus is expected to put out the remaining capital by the middle of next year.

Deploying much of the fund’s capital within a short period of time was no easy feat, Peter Merrigan, president and chief executive of Taurus Investment Holdings, told PERE. “It’s a very tough space right now,” he said. “You have to have a competitive price, and the terms need to be competitive as well. You need quick due diligence, a quick closing timeframe. You have to have a reputation as a closer, not as negotiator. Have we had to pay more than we would have liked? We’ve certainly had to stretch, but the deals have to pencil within our underwriting.”

Taurus was founded in 1976 in Munich, Germany by brothers Guenther and Lorenz Riebling, who together went on to establish Taurus US in 1984. In 1997, Merrigan joined the firm to set up a separate venture called Taurus New England. In 2002, the various entities merged to form Taurus Investment Holdings.