Apax closes ninth global fund on $9bn hard-cap

The European firm’s latest fund, Apax IX, is about 20% larger than its previous fund that closed in 2013.

Apax Partners has held a final close of its ninth fund on its $9 billion hard-cap, the firm said in a statement on Tuesday.
Apax IX launched in January, targeting $7.6 billion, and held a first close on $7.9 billion in June, according to PEI data.

The data also shows that the London-based firm’s ninth global fund drew commitments from limited partners such as California State Teachers’ Retirement System, Kansas Public Employees Retirement System, Michigan Department of Treasury, UK-based Clwyd Pension Fund and French investment firm Altamir.

According to the statement, the fund’s LP base was split 44 percent in North America, 23 percent in Asia, 21 percent in Europe and 12 percent elsewhere. It also includes corporate pensions, sovereign wealth funds, funds of funds, insurers, endowments and foundations.

Apax IX has made two investments to date, with a July acquisition of Virginia-based marine sector digital marketplace Dominion Marine Media and the purchase of medical diagnostics provider Unilabs earlier this month.

Apax IX will invest between $150 million and $900 million of equity per transaction, a source familiar with the matter said.
Its predecessor, Apax VIII, closed in June 2013 on $7.5 billion, ahead of its $6 billion target, according to PEI data.

The source said the eighth fund was generating a 15.8 percent net internal rate of return, as of 30 September.

According to the statement, Apax’s exits from its funds have generated a gross internal rate of return of 27 percent since January 2014. The latest fund close brings Apax’s aggregate capital raised since inception to more than $48 billion, it said.

Apax was originally founded in the early 1980s as a venture capital firm focused on Europe and the US. In 1993, it began pursuing buyouts, and in 2005 expanded geographically to China, in 2008 to India and in 2013 to Brazil, according to its website.

The firm targets four core sectors: tech and telecom; services in business, industrials and support; healthcare; and consumer, the firm’s website showed.

Apax seeks investments in companies with enterprise values of between €1 billion and €5 billion.

An earlier fund, 2007-vintage Europe-focused Apax Europe VII, was generating a net IRR of 5.5 percent, as of 30 September 2015, according to Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund. Before Apax VIII, which has a global mandate, Apax had region-focused funds, including Apax Europe VII and Apax US VII, as per the firm’s website.

Apax declined to comment.