New Mexico State Investment Council, Santa Fe, committed up to $150 million to Mercer for a private equity separately managed account and also pledged a total of up to $475 million to four alternative investment funds. .
The new strategy, which will invest on the secondary market and make co-investments, will not only save on private equity fees but also allow the council to make investments faster than a typical commingled fund, said Charles Wollmann, interim co-state investment officer.
"Attaining and maintaining a specific private equity NAV (net asset value) over time poses significant challenges for investors because private equity firms (not the fund's limited partners) control the pace at which committed capital is drawn or the pace at which capital contributions are returned," according to a staff memo for the council's Oct. 24 meeting.
The council, which oversees $47 billion in endowments, is the sole investor in the new separately managed account. The SMA will co-invest alongside current private equity managers in its $3.9 billion national private equity portfolio.
Separately, the council committed a total of up to $475 million to four alternative investment funds. New Mexico State Investment Council committed up to $250 million to Silver Point Distressed Opportunities II, a private credit fund that would invest in opportunistic lending involving distressed, dislocation and special situations; and up to $100 million to New Mountain Partners VII, a North American middle-market buyout fund.
The council also committed up to $75 million to Altaris Health Partners VI, a healthcare and middle-market buyout fund focused on pharmaceuticals, and up to $50 million to M13 Ventures IV, an early stage venture capital fund focused on consumer and consumer technology companies.
The council also amended Meketa Investment Group's consultant contract to include private fixed income. Meketa previously served as the council's consultant for private credit corporate and asset-based debt market strategies.
The council has also scheduled the first round of interviews for the state investment officer position on Nov. 1 and Nov. 2. It's expected the finalists would be brought to interview with the full council, which would select a new state investment officer at a subsequent public meeting. A selection could be made as early as December, Wollmann said. However, no specific dates have been selected beyond the initial round of interviews, he added.