Florida SBA sends money to GSO, Crescent, BlackRock

The Sunshine State pension fund recommitted to the latest incarnations of three funds to which it previously pledged capital.  

The Florida State Board of Administration (SBA) approved $500 million for investments in mezzanine and real estate debt during the third quarter, the Tallahassee, Florida-based pension fund said Monday in an email.

The mezzanine investments consist of $200 million to the GSO Capital Partners’ Opportunities Fund III and $150 million to the Crescent Capital Group’s Mezzanine Partners VII, while the real estate debt commitment was $150 million to BlackRock’s Carbon Capital VI.

GSO announced a final close on its third mezzanine fund on Monday, which surpassed its initial $6 billion target and hit the vehicle’s $6.5 billion hard-cap. During the third quarter, the fund garnered a total of $3.2 billion in commitments.

GSO’s first mezzanine vehicle, launched in 2007, generated a net internal rate of return 18.9 percent, as of 30 June, according to an SBA report. The Capital Opportunities Fund raised $2 billion, blowing past is $750 million goal. SBA committed $200 million to the fund. According to PDI data, CalPERS, the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) and the New Jersey Division of Investment (DoI) each pledged money to the fund.

For its second mezzanine vehicle, Capital Opportunities Fund II, GSO garnered $4.12 billion, also surpassing its fundraising goal of $3.75 billion. It generated a net IRR of 12.4 percent, the SBA report showed. The SBA committed $150 million. CalPERS and CalSTRS upped their contributions to $250 million each, while the New Jersey DoI also increased their commitment to $150 million, according to PDI data.

Crescent’s Mezzanine Partners VII fund has landed $2.5 billion so far, nearing its $3 billion target, PDI data showed. Other LPs committing capital included the Michigan Department of Treasury ($150 million) and Seoul-based funds Government Employees Pension Service ($50 million) and Korea Teachers Pension Fund ($150 million).

For Crescent’s sixth vehicle, Mezzanine Partners VI, the Los Angeles-based firm raised $3.44 billion, easily clearing its $2.5 billion target. As of 30 June, the fund had an IRR of 8.2 percent, according to the SBA report. The SBA also contributed $150 million to the sixth fund, while other commitments included a $130 million pledge from the Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board (PRIM) and $100 million from the Maryland State Retirement and Pension Board.

For BlackRock’s Carbon Capital VI fund, regulatory documents show the firm has secured $270.1 million for the strategy. The asset management behemoth’s earlier real estate debt fund, Carbon Capital V, posted a 7.5 percent IRR as of 30 June the same SBA report showed. The Florida fund also committed $150 million to that fund. An SEC filing showed BlackRock set a $750 million goal.

The Florida SBA manages over 30 funds, including the Florida Retirement System Pension Plan, which makes up more fourth-fifths of the assets the SBA manages.