Fonds de Reserve pour les Retraites (FRR), a French pension fund with more than $37 billion of assets under management, has allocated a total of €300 million in funds investing in the private debt of French companies.
BNP Paribas Asset Management and Schelcher Prince Gestion were both selected for the mandates following an eight-month search.
Both firms manage fund strategies financing small and medium-sized enterprises through private placements. The duration of the mandates is 12 years with the potential addition of two extra years.
The announcement follows FRR’s confirmation last week that Idinvest and Lyxor would manage its debt acquisition strategies. The mandates total €300 million and are targeted at investments in loan instruments financing French SMEs.
Salwa Boussoukaya-Nasr, chief investment officer at FRR, told PDI last week that it applied similar approaches in its search for fund managers in both the private placements and debt acquisition mandates. “The most important criteria are the experience of the management – their track record and their ability to make a good decision – and source opportunities within the French market,” she said.
In October, BNP Paribas Asset Management closed its investment fund targeting opportunities in the French SME market after collecting €500 million in commitments. Among those investing in the fund were AG2R La Mondiale, CNP Assurances, and Federal Finance Gestion, as well as the bank itself and the European Investment Fund.