CalSTRS bets $300M on real estate with longtime partner, Divco

The massive state teachers pension fund will look to tech-oriented properties

Divco CEO Stuart Shiff and Waters Edge
Divco CEO Stuart Shiff and Waters Edge

California’s massive teachers pension fund is pumping $300 million into commercial real estate, with a focus on the tech sector.

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System is starting the venture with longtime investment partner Divco West Real Estate Services, Bloomberg reported.

Divco West has invested $1.5 billion of CalSTRS funds over the last decade and a half.

The venture will focus on commercial properties in core and core plus assets in markets in five states and Washington, D.C.

It will include “strong local economies and highly qualified workforces,” according to a press release.

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In California, that includes Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego. Other target markets are New York City, Boston and Austin, according to a press release.

Divco West specializes in real estate focused on the tech industry and is most active in San Jose and the San Francisco area — where it is headquartered — but has worked on a handful of properties in L.A.

It recently sold the Water’s Edge creative office campus in Playa Vista to Rockwood Capital for $190.5 million after paying Maguire Partners $132.5 million for a stake in the building. Last year it sold a two-building office complex in El Segundo to Starwood Capital for $174 million.

CalSTRS said at the end of last year it counted around 930,000 teachers as members and had a portfolio adding up to around $208.7 billion.

Earlier this month it said its unfunded liability climbed by $10 billion to around $107.3 billion, according to Bloomberg.