Ardian invests $2.5bn in Mubadala deal

The Paris-based firm has inked a giant stapled secondaries transaction with Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Capital.

Ardian has used its 2015-vintage ASF VII fund to complete a stapled deal with Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Capital in what is understood to be the largest-ever stapled private equity secondaries deal.

The Paris-headquartered investment firm invested a total of $2.5 billion in the deal, according to a statement. Ardian invested $1.75 billion in the secondaries portfolio, which comprises 14 limited partnership stakes mainly across North American buyout and growth funds, and 14 direct investments.

The majority investor in the secondaries portfolio is Ardian, while Mubadala has retained the remaining interest.

Ardian has also committed $750 million to a new $1.5 billion private equity fund that Mubadala will use to invest in directs, co-investments and fund commitments mainly in North America and Europe. Mubadala, which committed $750 million to the fund, will focus on investing across sectors including sports, media, entertainment, consumer food and energy infrastructure, according to the statement.

A source familiar with the matter told Secondaries Investor that Ardian used both primary and secondaries capital from its $14 billion ASF VII fund. ASF VII, which closed in April last year, included $10.8 billion of dedicated secondaries capital and remains the largest pool ever raised for the strategy.

“Managing funds on behalf of third-party investors is both an endorsement of our strong investment track record and part of a longer term strategy to further institutionalize the Mubadala Capital platform,” Waleed Al Mokarrab Al Muhairi, deputy group chief executive and CEO of the emerging sectors platform at Mubadala Development Company, said in the statement.

The deal, which closed on 31 March, is the first time Mubadala Capital has raised capital from third-party investors. Mubadala Capital is the in-house investment arm of the Abu Dhabi state investment firm Mubadala Investment Company. MIC was formed in January when the Gulf state merged its two state investments funds, Mubadala Development Company and International Petroleum Investment Company, to create the world's 14th largest sovereign wealth fund with $125 billion in assets under management.

It is understood Campbell Lutyens advised on the deal.

Mubadala holds stakes in investment firms including Carlyle, Investcorp and Mubadala Infrastructure Partners, a private equity fund also backed by GE and Credit Suisse, according to its website. It also holds stakes in companies including EMI Music Publishing and has invested in a €300 million co-investment fund with Caisse des Dépôts’ investment arm, focusing mainly on French private equity, real estate and infrastructure opportunities.

It is unclear which assets were part of the secondaries deal.

Mubadala Capital has been investing in private equity since it was established in 2011. The investment company “may take on third-party capital for other areas of its business in future”, the statement notes.