Brynwood closes Fund VII on $400m hard-cap

The lower mid-market firm held a first and final close on its largest fund to date, which will focus on control investments in the consumer sector.

Brynwood Partners has held a first and final close on $400 million for its Fund VII, according to a statement from the Greenwich, Connecticut-based firm.

Fund VII had a $400 million target and hard-cap and is Brynwood’s largest fund in its 29-year history, according to the statement.

“The high level of interest in our Fund from the investment community validates our belief that returns in the lower middle market are primarily driven by operational improvements at the portfolio company level,” senior managing partner Hendrik Hartong III said in the statement.

Brynwood invests up to $80 million in control positions in lower mid-market companies in the consumer sector.  Its portfolio includes snack company Back to Nature and upscale pet boarding chain Best Friends.  Earlier this month, Brynwood’s newly-formed portfolio company Lightlife Foods acquired one of ConAgra Foods’ smaller meatless frozen product lines. 

Brynwood’s Fund VI collected $305 million in 2010 and received commitments from limited partners including Guardian Life Insurance Company of America and the Pennsylvania State Employees’ Retirement System, according to Private Equity International’s Research and Analytics division. The firm has increased the size of its successor funds gradually during the past three decades, and its $257 million Fund V raised more than triple the $80 million collected for its Fund IV.

Hendrick Hartong Jr, former president and chief operating officer of chemical and transportation-focused The Pittson Company, co-founded Brynwood 1984.