French public service pension scheme ERAFP has awarded a residential real estate mandate to Ampère Gestion, bringing to an end a manager search that was launched in May last year.

The €29bn pension fund plans to invest at least €200m over the next three years. A “substantial” portion of investments will be in intermediary housing, it said.

It also awarded two stand-by mandates, to La Française and Swiss Life REIM.

ERAFP’s real estate investment executive recently told IPE that the fund aims to make €365m of new real estate commitments in the next 12 months, focusing on France and rest of Europe.

ERAFP’s real estate investments must conform with its socially responsible investment policies and decisions taken with a long-term perspective, the pension fund said.

Philippe Desfossés, chief executive of ERAFP, said the mandate was an opportunity for the fund to go further with its efforts to help civil servants secure affordable housing, as per the deal it struck in January 2017.

This was for an agreement to allow civil servants in the Paris region to reserve low-rent housing from within a property portfolio managed by CDC Habitat and Ampère Gestion.

In the statement about the new mandate, Desfossés said ERAFP would ensure the arrangement would be extended to other public servants, and to areas beyond Paris where rents were high relative to earnings.

Ampère Gestion is part of CDC Habitat, the recently renamed SNI Group, a subsidiary of the French state-owned public interest financial group Caisse des Dépots et Consignations (CDC).

It says it is France’s biggest residential landlord, and aims to provide institutional investors with real estate investment opportunities in France, frequently with a social utility component.

For more about ERAFP’s and other French investors’ real asset investments see the IPE Real Assets January/February magazine