​Michigan University endowment invests in Balboa retail real estate fund

The University of Michigan Endowment is investing in a real estate fund focused on the US retail market.

According to industry sources, the investor has committed $50m (€43.3m) to Balboa Retail Fund II, a vehicle managed by Balboa Retail Partners.

It is one of a few funds in the US that invests exclusively in retail assets. Another is Asana Partners Fund II, which raised $800m in April.

Many US pension funds and institutional investors are choosing to reduce their exposure to retail real estate, due to pressures from online commerce.

Balboa Retail Fund II will be pursuing a value-add strategy, acquiring assets that can be re-leased, redeveloped or repositioned.

Balboa Retail Partners did not respond to a request for comment.

The University of Michigan Endowment is also understood to be investing in Virtus Real Estate Capital Fund III, managed by Virtus Real Estate Capital.

Virtus focuses on niche types of real estate, including workforce housing and medical office buildings.

Virtus did not respond to a request for comment.

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