Partners Group acquires PCA

Swiss alternatives manager Partners Group is acquiring heavyweight US real estate advisor Pension Consulting Alliance.

Partners Group, a Switzerland-based alternative asset manager, is acquiring the real estate asset management arm of US-based Pension Consulting Alliance. Details of the transaction were not released, but the Swiss manager said information would be forthcoming in March, along with its 2006 financial results.

Co-founded in 1988 by Nori Gerardo Lietz, PCA works with some of the biggest names in the US institutional investors space including CalSTRS, CalPERS and the Oregon Public Employees’ Retirement Fund.

According to a press release, the acquisition will add ten property professionals to Partners Group’s existing alternative investments team with Lietz continuing to serve as the chief strategist for private real estate investment management.

Lietz often makes waves in the private equity real estate community with her frank assessment of fund performance. In 2005, she presented evidence to a real estate conference in New York showing that median net IRRs for opportunity funds in the late 1990s were as low as 8 percent.

Pam Alsterlind, formerly the chief operating officer at PCA’s real estate practice, and Claude Angéloz, currently the chief of private real estate assets at Partners, will co-manage the merged real estate team. The group will be headquartered in a new San Francisco office, which Partners plans to open in May.

“Partners Group considers the transaction a milestone in the strategic development of its private real estate asset management business,” Dr. Marcel Erni, co-founder and chief investment officer at Partners, said in a statement. “This acquisition will give our clients unparalleled and global access to attractive investment opportunities in the strongly growing private real estate market, in which we have been an investor since 1999.”