South Korea’s NPS commits to Blackstone’s core PE fund

South Korea’s state investment fund is committing to the first Blackstone fund to target longer-term private equity investments.

South Korea’s National Pension Service (NPS), which manages $442 billion in assets, has committed capital to The Blackstone Group’s Core Equity Partners, a source with knowledge of the matter told Private Equity International. Core Equity is Blackstone’s first fund to focus on longer-term private equity investments beyond the typical five-year holding limit.

NPS’s investment is approximately KRW500 billion ($435 million; €393 million), according to an NPS source cited by Korea Economic Daily. That would comprise just over 8 percent of the $5 billion Core Equity is targeting for its fundraising, based on PEI Research & Analytics data.

Spokespeople for Blackstone and NPS declined to comment.

New York-based alternative assets powerhouse Blackstone raised $2.58 billion last month for its core fund, according to a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm said it received commitments of $1.58 billion from five investors. The fund reportedly attracted commitments from the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, China Investment Corporation,and pension funds in Texas and New Jersey.

NPS this week made a number of key personnel changes in its alternatives division. Young-Sig Yang, a former global alternatives division head for NPS, is now head of investment strategy, while Sang-Hyun Yoo, who previously led the pension fund’s domestic alternatives division, is the new head of its global alternative division. 

NPS also picked four domestic private equity managers to manage KRW700 billion of its funds, as reported by PEI. VIG Partners and Skylake Investment will receive KRW 250 billion each to invest in large-cap companies, while Lindeman Asia Investment and SG Private Equity will be allocated KRW100 billion each to invest in mid-sized companies.