Allianz and Manulife are to co-invest up to $1bn (€810m) in US real estate.

Allianz Real Estate of America and Manulife’s Asset Management Private Markets arm will target office properties in US gateway cities.

The two investors said Allianz had taken an 80% stake in two office properties in Chicago and Washington DC as part of the joint venture.

Manulife’s John Hancock Real Estate unit sold the stake in its New York Avenue property in Washington and a North Wacker Drive asset in Chicago.

Christoph Donner, chief executive at Allianz Real Estate of America, said the company had “ambitious goals” to expand its real estate presence in “high-quality” US assets.

The German investor has invested in major US office markets, including Boston, New York and San Francisco via equity and commercial loan investments.

As reported in July, Allianz was in talks to sell a Boston office building, according to sources.

Allianz and Beacon Capital Partners were jointly selling their 1m sqft One Beacon Street building in the US city for around $565m to a joint venture between Norges Bank Investment Management and US insurer MetLife.