Merit Capital marches toward mezz fund goal

The sixth fund is the latest form a firm that began investing in mezzanine debt in the early 1990s.

Merit Capital Partners has crossed the halfway mark for its most recent mezzanine vehicle, according to a US Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

The Chicago-based alternative lender has raised $298.02 million toward its $500 million Mezzanine Fund VI. The Minnesota State Board of Investment and the State of Wisconsin Board of Investment committed $100 million and $50 million to the fund, respectively. M2O Private Fund Advisors is serving as placement agent for the fund.

Fund V gathered $612.5 million in commitments from an array of limited partners, including the Teachers’ Retirement System of Louisiana, with $40 million; Nebraska Investment Council, with $15 million; the Minnesota State Board of Investment; and Maryland State Retirement and Pension System.

Merit has a long track record of investing in mezzanine debt, with the investment period for the first fund, a $115 million vehicle, running from 1993 to 1997, according to a Fund V slide deck prepared for TRSL. Fund II, with a 1997 vintage, and Fund III, with a 2000 vintage, raised $190 million and $311 million, respectively. Fund IV launched in 2005 raised $455 million.