Morningstar Properties LLC, which operates self-storage facilities under the Morningstar Mini-Storage brand, has launched a $75 million fund through its private-equity real estate affiliate Blue Doors Capital Partners. Blue Doors Storage Fund II will invest in facility acquisitions as well as the renovation and development of storage properties in major U.S. metropolitan markets and strategic secondary markets, company officials said in a press release.
The fund, backed by a handful of institutional investors, is the second private-equity investment vehicle sponsored by Morningstar Properties. The company launched the $55 million Blue Doors Storage Fund I in February 2013.
“Morningstar has been extremely pleased with the assets it has acquired and developed through Blue Doors Storage Fund I. Even more importantly, so have our institutional partners, all of which are working toward another investment in our second fund,” said Dave Benson, president. “Blue Doors Storage Fund II will allow Morningstar to continue to grow its portfolio of high-quality storage facilities and create additional value by capitalizing on the continued, strong underlying operating fundamentals, coupled with our operational expertise and 30-plus years of experience in the sector.”
Last October, Morningstar sold 65 percent of its self-storage portfolio (43 facilities in concert with investment-management firm Harrison Street Real Estate Capital LLC) to Public Storage Inc. for $315 million. The move was similar to 2006 when Morningstar sold 60 of its 63 properties to Public Storage.
Founded in North Carolina in 1981, Morningstar Properties is a vertically integrated developer, owner and operator of real estate products focused primarily on self-storage and marinas in the Southeast. The company has developed, acquired and operated more than 150 self-storage projects across the country, totaling more than 8.8 million square feet. It currently owns and operates 35 self-storage centers comprising more than 13,000 units in nine states, with most concentrated in the South. The company’s future growth is funded through Blue Doors Capital Partners, an affiliated private-equity fund designated for acquisition and development of self-storage centers.