New York State Common Retirement Fund (NYSCRF) is investing in European industrial and US value-add real estate strategies.

The pension fund is now a limited partner in the Exeter Europe Value Ventures III, the first commingled European fund to be launched by Philadelphia-headquartered Exeter Property Group.

NYSCRF confirmed to IPE Real Assets that it had made a €150m commitment directly to the fund and an additional €50m for co-investments.

It said it was an “opportune time to invest” in European industrial assets, considering that the market cycle is “not as advanced as in the US” and “the full impact of e-commerce on industrial assets has not been felt yet”.

It is the first time the pension fund has invested with Exeter Property Group and the first time it has invested in a European industrial-specific fund.

Exeter Europe Value Ventures III is targeting net returns of a 12% to 15% and has attracted a number of US investors, including San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System and New Mexico State Investment Council.

NYSCRF has also approved a $150m (€129m) commitment to Heitman Value Partners IV, a value-added real estate fund.

The pension fund has invested with Heitman through joint ventures in the past, but this is the first time it has invested in a Heitman-sponsored commingled fund.

NYSCRF said: “Because we are later in the US real estate investment cycle, the pension fund finds this investment attractive because of its defensive strategy, particularly its focus on acquiring assets that are contra-cyclical or recession-resistant with strong cash flow and attractive yields.”