A joint venture between The Bernstein Companies, a real estate investment management firm, and OPZ Capital, an opportunity zone fund manager, has announced that it intends to launch its first opportunity zone fund, the OPZ Bernstein Opportunity Zone Fund I, on February 1, 2019.
Established by Congress as part of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the opportunity zone program offers potentially significant tax benefits to encourage long-term investments in certain low-income areas, as determined by U.S. census data. There are currently more than 8,700 designated opportunity zones in the U.S. and its five territories.
OPZ Bernstein, a subsidiary of The Bernstein Companies, is a newly created real estate private equity fund focused exclusively on making opportunity zone fund investments and plans to raise capital from accredited investors to deploy to developers and operators across the country.
OPZ Bernstein noted that the portfolio will be diversified in nature, both geographically and by product type, with a core focus on multifamily development in urban locations.
Craig Bernstein, founder of OPZ Capital, will be leading the new venture in conjunction with Bernstein’s executive director of structured finance, Stefan Kershow.
“The Bernstein Companies is unique in that it possesses the necessary infrastructure to operate an institutional quality opportunity zone fund and has an extensive track record in deploying capital into these specific census tracts,” said Bernstein. “Over the past 15 years, The Bernstein Companies has successfully allocated over $1.5 billion into new market tax credit transactions across 40 states, a majority of which overlap with the recently approved opportunity zones.”
Founded in 1933, The Bernstein Companies is a commercial real estate investment management firm based in Washington, DC. The firm says that it has been involved in more than $3 billion worth of transactions and currently owns, develops and manages a variety of product types across the country.