Illinois commits $100 mln to Morgan Creek venture fund as anchor tenant

  • Morgan Creek Partners Venture Access Fund II gets pledge
  • Fund managed by Union Grove Partners under Morgan Creek exec
  • Venture capital fund-of-funds targeting $200 mln

The commitment from Illinois brings Morgan Creek Partners Venture Access Fund II LP half way to its fundraising target of $200 million. The fund’s predecessor, Morgan Creek Partners Venture Access Fund, raised $103 million, according to a Form D filing in 2012.

With $12.9 billion in assets and an unfunded liability of $22.8 billion, Illinois targets five percent of its investments for private equity. Much of its $644 million private equity portfolio is held in funds-of-funds such as Adams Street, Pantheon and Muller & Monroe

The new venture fund-of-funds will be managed by Union Grove Partners, a freshly-inked partnership led by Morgan Creek venture team member Greg Bohlen, along with Patrick Cairns and John Spilman

Union Grove Partners will remain in Chapel Hill, NC, at Morgan Creek headquarters. A source familiar with the firm said Bohlen will now have more autonomy within Morgan Creek through the new Union Grove entity. Morgan Creek will continue to provide back office, compliance and infrastructure for Union Grove.

Besides Morgan Creek Partners Venture Access Fund II, Morgan Creek is also raising a direct co-investment fund with a target of $100 million called Morgan Creek Partners Direct Venture Fund I.