LONDON-Chicago-based fund manger Heitman is to launch its second European Real Estate Fund. The €175 million ($179 million) fund is the firm’s second designed to take advantage of increasing real estate investment opportunities in the Central European marketplace.

Heitman Central European Property Partners II, which was oversubscribed, follows two year after the formation of the €131 million ($135 million) HCEPP I, which is fully invested in more than twenty properties worth €580 million (USD 600 million).

Christopher Merrill, Managing Director of Heitman’s International Private Equity Group said investors in HCEPP II include European and US pension funds and institutions including ABP–the world’s second largest Pension Fund–Immofinanz–Austria’s largest publicly listed property company–and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

“The first investment for HCEPP II, a €100 million ($103 million) portfolio of four retail centres located throughout the Czech Republic, has already been placed under contract,” Merrill said. Ultimately HCEPP II will have buying power of more than €650 million ($670 million) aimed at acquistions and development opportunties in Hungary; Poland; Czech Republic; Slovakia; Slovenia; Latvia; Lithuania; Estonia and Romania.

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