NORTH AMERICA – The Texas Municipal Retirement System is planning a new manager search for core plus/value-added real estate investment strategies in the US.

The pension fund has allocated up to $300m (€221m) for the search, which will aim to hire one or more commingled funds. 

The investor's real estate consultant, ORG Portfolio Management, will conduct the search.

The search will not be a formal Request for Proposal arrangement – instead, ORG is to recommend a shortlist of commingled funds that will be considered for the capital. 

According to industry sources, one of the funds that have been asked to participate in the search is the Income & Growth Fund managed by JP Morgan Asset Management.

Texas Municipal will be making a final decision on the search some time this year, although it has not yet established a board meeting date when the winning firms for the mandate will be chosen.

The core plus/value added search is part of $600m the pension fund is looking to invest in real estate during this calendar year. 

Around half of this will be in core and the rest in co-investments.

Through the end of 2012, the scheme had invested 1.9% of its $20.1bn of total plan assets in real estate, for which it has a 10% target allocation.