Asset manager Robeco wants to attract institutional investors to finance residential mortgages in the Netherlands.

An investment fund run by the €152bn asset manager has struck an agreement with Rabobank subsidiary Vista Hypotheken.

Robeco and Rabobank said the asset manager’s Dutch Mortgages Fund (RDMF) would back the mortgages. The fund targets pension funds and insurers, both locally and abroad.

The RDMF joins insurers – including Nationale Nederlanden, Aegon, ASR and Achmea – as well as specialist mortgage providers including DMFCO/Munt and Dynamic Credit, which issue residential mortgages financed with pension assets.

According to Robeco, its fund was the first institutional product in this sector that was fully detached from the party issuing the mortgages.

However, Rabobank was the owner of Robeco until 2013, when it sold most of its stake to Japanese company Orix. In 2016 it sold its remaining holdings.

Rotterdam-based Robeco declined to provide details about how much it wanted to raise from investors, or whether any commitments had been made.

A spokesman said it was “in advanced discussions” with both Dutch and foreign investors.

Vista Hypotheken focuses on first-time buyers with the initial emphasis on mortgages with a higher loan-to-value ratio and a fixed interest period of at least 20 years.

Rabobank and Robeco said that no other players had competed to fund Vista’s mortgages.

In the past, Robeco itself issued residential mortgages under the label of Roparco.

However, as the asset manager wanted to get rid of its banking license, Rabobank took over the portfolio in 2013, subsequently selling it to property finance company RNHB.