Japan’s Mitsui has agreed to acquire a 20% stake in US urban real estate and infrastructure fund management firm CIM Group.

The deal marks Mitsui’s foray into the US real estate asset management market. Los Angeles-based CIM offers investment strategies in opportunistic, core/stabilised, and value-add real estate, real estate debt, and infrastructure. The firm has about $19bn in assets under management.

Mitsui will invest between $450m and $550m for the stake and in funds managed by CIM. Proceeds from the deal will be entirely used to fund the growth of CIM.

In addition, Mitsui will support marketing activities of CIM’s funds to the Japanese market through its subsidiary Japan Alternative Investment, with an aim to raise several hundred billion yen of new capital from Japanese investors.

Mitsui president and CEO Tatsuo Yasunaga said: “Our investment in CIM was the culmination of a systematic search for a best-in-class manager in the real-asset management business. Investing in CIM is consistent with our strategic plan to expand Mitsui’s real-asset management business to the U.S. and to enhance Mitsui’s global assets under management.”