(Bloomberg) -- BlackRock Inc. is making a new push to raise money for its long-term private equity fund after initially struggling to attract investors.

The world’s largest asset manager is seeking to gather an additional $2 billion to $3 billion for its Long Term Private Capital strategy, according to people with knowledge of the matter. The fund, which acquires stakes in private companies, announced its initial close last January, having amassed $3.44 billion, falling short of its earliest target of as much as $12 billion.

While BlackRock manages $10 trillion and is a leader in low-cost funds that track indexes, it also has been expanding into higher-fee alternative assets as investors chase higher returns outside of publicly traded stocks and bonds. Chief Executive Officer Larry Fink said Friday that the company raised a record $42 billion in capital last year from clients seeking alternative strategies.

BlackRock first pitched the long-term fund in 2018 as part of a high-profile effort to grow in private equity. Fundraising went slower than expected.

A spokesman for New York-based BlackRock declined to comment.

Investor appetite for alternative assets has accelerated in the past several years driven by pension funds, college endowments and family offices.

As a result, some of the world’s largest buyout firms are raising record sums -- and haven’t been able to spend their cash fast enough. At the end of last year, Apollo Global Management Inc. targeted $25 billion for its next flagship fund.

The BlackRock fund has made five investments so far, including in Authentic Brands, whose portfolio of companies includes Brooks Brothers, Sports Illustrated and Forever 21.

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