NAI/Merin Hunter Codman principals Neil Merin, Jordan Paul and Dung Lam, along with investor Joseph Sprouls, are raising a commercial real estate fund that plans to purchase up to $200 million of commercial real estate in the Southeastern U.S.
More than 50 limited partners, including high net-worth individuals and family offices, committed to MHCommercial Real Estate Fund, which plans to invest between $150 million and $200 million to acquire office, retail, industrial and multifamily properties in the Southeast over the next year.
Sprouls is a former global head of commercial real estate services for Citigroup and MetLife. Corey Winsett, former Torchlight and LNR Property asset manager, joined the fund as director of acquisitions and asset management. NAI/Merin Hunter Codman, a West Palm Beach firm, has acquired more than $300 million of commercial real estate projects over the last five years.
Merin said the fund has commitments for a majority of the $25 million fundraising target. The fund began raising money in April and officially closes at the end of 2019. Merin said he and his partners expect to launch another fund that’s “significantly larger.”
MHCommercial Real Estate Fund will primarily invest in office and retail properties in North and South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Merin said he and his partners are also open to strategic investments in industrial and multifamily. At this point in the cycle, they are looking for stable, cash-flowing properties, as there are few value-add opportunities available.
“We bought about $300 million in real estate in individual deals over the last five years. We decided this was a better vehicle for everyone to participate in,” Merin added.
The fund has bid on properties ranging from $50 million to $80 million, and from $10 million to $15 million.
In August, Atlantic | Pacific Real Estate Group and Blue Arch Advisors closed a $140 million portion of a fund that invests in multifamily properties in the Southeast and Southwest U.S. The fund is looking to raise a total of $300 million, which will give it buying power of over $750 million.