Investors - JUNE 5, 2017

Minnesota commits $200m to energy funds

by Jody Barhanovich

The $85.3 billion Minnesota State Board of Investment has committed $100 million each to BlackRock Global Renewable Power Fund II and Avenue Energy Opportunities Fund II, according to a board statement.

BlackRock Global Renewable Power Fund II is an infrastructure fund that invests in utility-scale wind and solar projects. The fund’s portfolio is expected to be roughly 85 percent solar and 15 percent wind, with about a third of the projects being in the construction phase. About 60 percent of the portfolio will be invested in the United States, with the rest in Europe and Canada. The fund seeks to raise $1 billion in total equity and has raised $601 million so far.

Avenue Energy Opportunities Fund II is an opportunistic infrastructure fund managed by Avenue Capital Group. The fund opened in April 2017 and invests in energy and utility companies throughout North America.

The fund’s predecessor, Avenue Energy Opportunities Fund, held a $700 million final close in 2015. The fund specializes in buyouts, senior debt investments, and investments in stressed and distressed energy, power, and utilities companies in North America.

Both commitments are subject to final negotiations.

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