Empire State Taps Two for Private Equity

January 23, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - New York State Common Retirement Fund has selected Bank of America and Parish Capital as "partners" in its efforts to expand its emerging manager private equity portfolio.

The fund will allocate $350 million to Parish Capital, with $250 million of that directed toward co-investment opportunities and $100 million directed toward fund investments. Bank of America will receive $200 million, which it will direct to fund investments, according to the announcement. The firms were selected pursuant to a request for proposals issued early last year under DiNapoli’s initiative to expand the fund’s private equity emerging manager program by $1 billion over three years.   

Program Outlined

The fund began a formal emerging manager private equity program in 2005. The program targets funds with assets under management below $750 million, as well as funds owned by women and minority managers. DiNapoli expanded the program last year in order to increase investments with these smaller fund managers who tend to be entrepreneurial and focus on smaller, less traditional segments of the marketplace. The fund currently has over $400 million invested through the program.

“Bank of America and Parish Capital stood out in a strong class of candidates and we look forward to working together to generate strong risk adjusted returns for the Common Retirement Fund and its one million members,” said State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, who is the sole trustee of the fund. “We have great confidence in our emerging manager private equity strategy and expect these new partnerships to pay dividends for years to come.”