UNITED STATES - Starwood Land Ventures has setup a $150m (€95.3m) joint venture with Riverway Properties to invest in residential land acquisition and new project development in Houston.

Mike Moser is the East Coast Regional President of Starwood Land.  He said, "We believe in the sound long-term home building fundamentals of the Houston market."

The company knows that in general the housing market in the US is now going through a slump.  With less capital in the marketplace there could be some good investment opportunities.

Riverway Properties is led by John Santasiero. He said, "We expect Houston to continue growing in terms of job creation and population. We are well positioned to move quickly and capitalise on the projected growth."

The JV is called Riverway Capital. Starwood Land is the main equity partner and Riverway Properties is the main operating partner.

Riverway  Capital aims to make two kinds of investments.  One is to purchase improved lots that could be developed immediately. The other is the acquisition of raw land that would be held for future use.

The venture will be targeting the single-family low-rise attached and detached segment of the housing market.

Some of the deals for the venture will involve the provision of equity and loans to other developers and the purchase of debt from lenders.

A typical size transaction for the venture will be $5m and above. The JV will be seeking deals that can gross IRRs of at least 20%.