Townsend raising second fund-of-funds

The Cleveland, Ohio-based investment firm has collected $298 million for the vehicle to date.

The Townsend Group is in the market with its latest real estate fund-of-funds, Townsend Real Estate Alpha Fund II, on Thursday, according to a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Cleveland, Ohio-based investment firm held a first close on $132.5 million for the fund last December, according to the filing. Since then, Townsend has held at least three other closings on the fund and raised $298 million so far, according to a filing with the SEC. Investors include Pennsylvania State University, which allocated $15 million to the fund. The firm is currently investing the fund’s capital. Foreside Fund Services is acting as placement agent for the fund.

Townsend raised $357.8 million, with a $600 million target, for the first fund in the series. Investors in the 2013 vehicle included the Sheet Metal Workers National Pension Fund and the Baptist Foundation of Texas, according to PERE Research & Analytics. Townsend invested in Fortress Investment Group’s Fortress Japan Opportunity Domestic Fund II, among other vehicles, with capital from the fund, according to a tax filing from the Baptist Foundation of Texas.

The firm’s current fundraising came during an ownership change: NorthStar Asset Management bought an 85 percent interest in Townsend in October for approximately $380 million, primarily from Chicago-based private equity firm GTCR. Townsend previously had sold a 70 percent stake in the firm to Aligned Asset Managers, a portfolio company of GTCR, in August 2011. New York-based NorthStar also purchased an additional 15 percent stake from Townsend.

Townsend, which was founded in 1983, managed approximately $13 billion of assets as of October.