While the Fund can be an important economic engine for the State of New York, the ultimate goal is to generate a solid rate of return on investments. In-state investment opportunities are always evaluated with this criteria in mind.
Whenever possible, the Fund specifically invests in enterprises, business ventures or companies that benefit the State of New York’s economy. The Fund:
- Invests in new and expanding New York companies and makes equity and debt capital available to small businesses as part of the In-State Private Equity Program. This program is designed to generate a market rate of return consistent with the risk of private equity while increasing the diversification of the Fund’s investment portfolio. The In-State Program provides a model for how the pension fund can identify profitable investment opportunities and generate market rate returns, while supporting business development and job growth in New York State. On March 31, 2018, the Fund’s private equity portfolio included investments in over 370 New York businesses with a fair value of $1.8 billion.
- Invests in commercial real estate properties such as shopping centers, office buildings, residential properties and hotels. Through these investments, the Fund has been able to acquire, develop, re-lease and reposition properties that are in need of upgrading with the goal of increasing jobs, helping the community and increasing property values. In line with these goals, the Fund is currently undertaking a major redevelopment of an office building in New York City and has co-invested alongside a multi-family commingled fund which focuses on affordable housing in the State.
- Originates affordable long-term housing mortgages across New York State through its designated manager, the Community Preservation Corporation. Through this program, the Fund has been able to provide moderate-income and low-income families across the State with the opportunity to rent affordable housing. Since the inception of this program, 19,988 units, representing $830 million in investment, have been completed and 2,465 are in the pipeline.
- Finances small, private businesses seeking venture capital through its commitment to the New York Business Development Corporation (NYBDC) Program. NYBDC has completed loans to retailers, restaurants, small manufacturers and a variety of other service businesses across the State. Since this program began in 1987, NYBDC has made 1,152 loans totaling $401 million to businesses that employ over 23,000 New Yorkers.
Additional information about these programs is available in the Investment section of NYSLRS 2018 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report beginning on page 84.