GLOBAL - The California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) has transferred its National Office Partners real estate portfolio from Hines to CommonWealth Partners.

The $998m (€759.2m) portfolio consists of approximately 5.2m square feet of Class A office properties in Boston, Chicago, Seattle, San Francisco, Palo Alto, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, Austin and Denver. 

CalPERS said the transfer was part of the pension fund's broader, strategic realignment of its real estate programme.

CommonWealth Partners is a privately held, vertically integrated real estate investment, development and management firm based in Los Angeles, with offices across the US.

The company has executed more than $4bn of transactions in other CalPERS partnerships beginning in 1998. 

The real estate manager will be an active investor on behalf of the pension fund, with a significant capital allocation for US investment.

Ted Eliopoulos, the senior investment officer who oversees more than $15bn invested in CalPERS global real estate, said: "CommonWealth Partners has done extremely well for us over the 12 years now, and we anticipate very good performance from them and the domestic office portfolio going forward.

"We're also excited about the opportunities we're pursing with Hines on a global basis."

According to the CalPERS website, CommonWealth has produced a 10% total nominal return before fees since inception for its investments for the pension fund.

CalPERS recently increased its allocation to a Hines-sponsored fund in Brazil by $190m. 

It has active co-investment platforms with Hines in Asia, Latin American and Europe, as well as investments in the US through the Hines CalPERS Green fund, focusing on sustainable development.

The value of the assets in National Office Partners has increased significantly over the past six months. 

As at 30 June 2010, the value was $571.1m. According to CalPERS officials, this increase is a function of the revenue bump in the office sector in general.