NY Common forges ahead with private equity

The $122bn pension committed $125m to DFJ Gotham Ventures II and the PCGI/NYSCRF Emerging Europe Fund. The pension also announced it was searching for a new manager for its emerging mangers fund that was formerly run by embattled Aldus Equity.

The $122 billion New York State Common Retirement Fund has committed $125 million to private equity funds amid a growing kick-back scandal that involved its former chief investment officer.

The pension, the third largest in the US, committed $25 million to Draper Fisher Jurvetson Gotham Ventures second fund. The pension also committed $100 million to the PCGI/NYSCRF Emerging Europe Investment Programme. No placement agents were used in either commitment.

New York Common announced earlier this year it was allocated $30 million out of the $100 million total allocation in the emerging Europe fund to investments in Northern Ireland. Washington, DC-based PCG International manages the emerging Europe fund.

The pension also announced last week it had begun searching for a replacement for Aldus Equity to manage its emerging managers fund, which has close to $500 million of capital. The emerging managers fund targets minority and women-owned firms.

New York Common fired Aldus after the firm’s founding partner, Saul Meyer, was indicted by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo for paying illegal fees in exchange for business with the pension.

New York Common declined to fulfill a capital call from Aldus last week, a pension spokesman said. The underlying funds in the emerging fund will receive their commitments from the pension once a new manager is in place, a pension spokesperson said.

Earlier this year, New York Common selected Bank of America to invest $200 million with the fund, and decided to allocate $350 million to Parish Capital Advisors, a minority-owned firm in North Carolina.