Advent closes world’s seventh biggest PE fund on $17.5bn

The private equity giant has raised $1.5bn more than its initial target for Advent International GPE IX.

Advent International has held the final close on its latest fund, making it the seventh biggest since the global financial crisis.

The Boston and London-headquartered firm took just six months to raise $17.5 billion for Advent International GPE IX Limited Partnership, exceeding its initial $16 billion target, according to a statement.

More than 90 percent of the fund’s commitments came from limited partners in prior Advent funds, the firm said.

Investors in the fund include Cathay Life Insurance, Minnesota State Board of InvestmentMaine Public Employees Retirement System and Los Angeles County Employees’ Retirement Association, according to PEI data.

GPE IX is $500 million shy of Blackstone’s $18 billion haul for its Capital Partners VII fund but ahead of Apax Partners’ Apax Europe VII which raised €11.2 billion, according to PEI data.

Advent placed 19th in this year’s PEI 300, closing on a total of $16 billion in five years to end-March 2019. Fund IX is about 35 percent larger than its predecessor, the 2015-vintage, $13 billion Advent International GPE VIII.

GPE IX will pursue the same strategy as the firm’s previous funds in this family, investing in buyout, corporate carve-out, public-to-private and growth equity transactions, primarily in Europe and North America and selectively in Asia and Latin America.

Advent has increased its focus on North America and European countries such as Austria, Poland and the Czech Republic. It also increased its investments in India, according to a presentation the company made to Rhode Island State Investment Commission.

Five core investment sectors are business and financial services, healthcare, industrial, retail, consumer and leisure, and technology, media and telecom.

– PEI previously reported that an investment committee meeting document from the New Mexico State Investment Council stated GPE IX’s hard-cap was set at $20 billion. Advent has clarified this was inaccurate.