CLSA raises second Asia fund

The Aria II Fund, CLSA Private Equity’s second fund targeting mid-size companies in Asia, has held a first close at $69m.

Hong Kong-headquartered CLSA Private Equity has raised $69m in a first close for Aria Equity Partners II, a private equity fund that will focus on mid-size companies in Asia. CLSA says its final target for the fund is $150m.

Although details of those investing in Aria have not been disclosed, the firm says the majority of the capital raised has come from a core group of international pension funds, financial institutions and insurance companies.

The firm said the new fund will not be restricted to any particular sector, but will target established businesses well positioned for growth, with strong management and a clear competitive advantage. The fund seeks to invest $5m to $15m per deal, holding its investment for one to five years.

Joint managing director Richard Pyvis commented in a statement: “Current market conditions make this the ideal time to be investing. Asia is experiencing growth and valuations are very reasonable.”

Aria II is the second investment vehicle to be launched by CLSA, with Aria 1 raising $75m. The new fund follows the final closing of the Baring Asia Private Equity Fund II LP at $257m in October, which will invest mainly in the North Asian markets of Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, Korea and Japan.

Based in Hong Kong and Singapore, CLSA Private Equity is wholly owned by CLSA Emerging Markets, the brokerage and investment services provider that covers the Asia-Pacific region.