California pension cancels Blue Road commitment

The Ospraie spin-out led by Ripplewood co-founder John Duryea has raised $200m since 2014 for its debut fund toward its $750m target.

The Merced County Employees Retirement Association (MCERA) has abandoned plans to commit $7.5 million to Blue Road Capital, an agri-focused firm that has raised more than $200 million for its debut fund, according to Agri Investor.

The California pension’s investment board voted in favour of the commitment in July 2015, but reversed the decision at its 28 January meeting.

Although Blue Road executives met with the investment committee prior to the July vote, the pension never followed through with any documentation or negotiation, according to Agri Investor’s sources.

Angelo Lamas, MCERA’s acting plan administrator, said the pension’s reversal was related to fund’s falling short of its $750 million target. He declined to comment further on the board’s reasoning.

Blue Road began fundraising in 2014, having initially gone to market with a $750 million target and $1 billion hard-cap, according to sources familiar with the matter. At the time of Blue Road’s founding, Fortune reported the fund was likely to target between $500 million and $750 million.

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