A Caisse des Dépôts subsidiary is aiming to raise €700m for a French residential property fund.

After a first closing of €515m in July, SNI (Société Nationale Immobilière), a subsidiary of Caisse des Dépôts, is targeting additional capital for its fonds de logement intermédiaire (FLI).

With leverage, FLI will have €1.2bn to invest in France’s residential sector.

As reported in July, several French institutional investors, including public sector fund ERAFP, backed the fund’s first close.

Aviva France, CNP Assurances, BNP Paribas Cardif and EDF Invest were among the investors in the vehicle. 

Malakoff Médéric and French construction assurer Société Mutuelle Assurances Bâtiment et Travaux Publics (SMABTP) also invested in the fund.

Vincent Mahe, general counsel of the SNI Group, said the fund’s target sector of middle-class housing was “very resilient”.

“Urban areas in France offer the best demographic prospects throughout Europe, thereby increasing the value of our assets in the long run,” Mahe said.

SNI said a new regulatory framework and advantageous tax status (reduced VAT of 10%, as well as exemption from property ownership tax on developed property), had made the sector more interesting to investors.

Negotiated acquisition prices allow for gross rental income of 4.8% and a 7% internal rate of return over 20 years.