Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners Private Markets (NYSE: MS) has closed its first private equity co-investment fund with approximately $450 million in capital commitments. The fund, called Private Equity Co-Investment Fund I (PECO I), exceeded its targeted benchmark of $350 million.

PECO I intends to invest in a diversified portfolio of direct co-investment opportunities. The firm seeks to partner with “high-quality” private equity sponsors in buyout and growth transactions across North America and Europe. PECO plans to target and provide exposure to “less efficient market segments.”

“We believe that our team’s ability to respond rapidly to private equity general partners, particularly at the smaller end of the market, affords us the opportunity to be highly selective in making investments,” states Neha Markle, managing director of AIP Private Markets. “In our view, PECO I provides our clients with unique exposure to these attractively positioned and well-vetted private equity assets in a highly efficient way.”

Established in 2001, AIP Private Markets is an investment team within Morgan Stanley Investment Management and specializes in the private capital sector. PECO I and the private markets team received investments from a variety of institutions, including: private and public pensions, corporations, foundations, family offices and high net worth individuals.

Other middle-market fund raises include: Ridgemont Equity Partners’ raising $320 million to invest in the energy sector; Blue Wolf Capital Partners LLC’s closing a $540 million PE fund; Private Advisors’ raising the firm’s seventh small business PE fund; Saw Mill Capital’s closing of a new investment fund with $340 million in commitments; Industrial Opportunity Partner’s (IOP) raising its third fund with $450 million; Platte River Equity'sclosing the firm’s fourth fundraise; CVC Capital Partners’ $18 billion fund to target U.S. and European investments; the Riverside Co.’s first minority investment fund in April 2017.