US - The $8.4bn Arkansas Teacher Retirement System (ATRS) it is looking to appoint a real estate manager to manage a $140m (€107m) property portfolio.

The new investment manager of the portfolio, made up primarily of office space in Arkansas, will be responsible for monitoring the performance of each asset, managing and developing annual budgets and business plans and identifying opportunities to sell underperforming assets when market conditions are appropriate. 

The portfolio contains office, retail and mixed-use properties, retirement community buildings and raw land. It also includes two partnerships outside of Arkansas, one with three multifamily communities in Oklahoma and one with two office buildings in Nashville.

The US pension fund currently allocates 10% to real estate and had $774.3m of real estate assets at 31 August 2008.

The new manager will also have to assess the performance of the current managers of each asset and make recommendations to the ATRS if he/she believes they are underperforming.

The deadline for submitting proposals to the ATRS is 6 February 2009 at 5pm.

The pension fund hopes to reach a decision on the final candidate by April this year.

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