(Read more on the debt and equity markets andthe multifamilymarket .)

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DALLAS-Dutch pension fund PGGM has pledged another $100 millionto Behringer Harvard, with the option of raising the equity staketo $300 million. The co-investment is aimed solely at acquiring newand to-be developed, class A multifamily properties in the US.

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Mark Alfieri, SVP of the Dallas-based investment group, tellsGlobeSt.com that PGGM has a three-year window to invest in thepool, which was jump-started in May2007 when the pension fund made its first direct investmentin US real estate. "It's a real credit to our team and ourmanagement team to have the confidence of such a prestigiouspension fund," he says.

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In the past eight months, Alfieri says Behringer Harvard hasspent $82 million or 80% of PGGM's first funding round to acquirenine multifamily complexes with close to 2,500 units in the metroareas of Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas and Washington, DC. Inthe near term, the co-investors will close on the Sartori at 1111E. Sunrise Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale and properties in Denver andWashington, DC. The portfolio is being amassed for a seven- to10-year hold.

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The PGGM-Behringer Harvard pool provides equity to developersfor projects from coast to coast and border to border, with theunderstanding that the backers get the deed once the project iscompleted and leased up. Development partnerships have been sealedwith Fairfield Residential of San Diego, Atlanta-based TrammellCrow Residential, Houston-headquartered Simmons Vedder & Co.,Greystar Development & Construction, also from Houston, andAltman Cos. of Boca Raton, the Sartori's developer. Alfieri saystalks are under way "with virtually every major developer in thecountry right now" to add to the co-investors' private stock ofdevelopers.

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The first two funding waves ultimately will yield about 35properties. "We believe we will do another 20 ventures with theexpanded relationship with PGGM," Alfieri says, adding upward of4,000 units could result from current negotiations.

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According to Alfieri, the equity investments most often aresupporting 70%-leveraged construction loans. The debt ratio changeswhen it's time to roll to permanent financing. Behringer Harvard'sMO is 60% to 65% leverage of net asset value.

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PGGM is the 17th largest pension fund in the world. Its USholdings previously consisted of investing in REIT funds and owningshares in predominately US real estate companies. It had been thelargest stakeholder in Chicago-based Equity Office Properties. Theinvestment marriage with Behringer Harvard is "a function of thetwo parties having similar goals as it relates to investmentobjectives," Alfieri explains.

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Under the terms of the PGGM agreement, Behringer Harvard managesall joint ventures with development partners, providing abroad-based spectrum of services from legal processes to propertymanagement. "We believe PGGM's decision to increase its investmentin our platform is a testament to the quality of these properties,their geographic diversity and the unique approach we've developedto achieve exceptional pricing," Robert M. Behringer, founder andCEO of Behringer Harvard, says in a press release about theincreased allocation.

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