Exclusive: ProA eyes first close of more than €250m

The Madrid-based firm aims to close its second fund on its €350m hard-cap by year-end

Madrid-based ProA Capital is nearing a first close on its second fund, PEI has learnt.

The firm, which is targeting €325 million for the fund, will hold a first close in excess of €250 million in the next two weeks, according to a source familiar with the matter.

ProA started pre-marketing in the second quarter of the year, but only officially came to market in June, when the firm’s private placement memorandum was published.

The firm has so far received “strong support” from existing investors, but has also attracted new LPs, the source said. ProA is expected to reach its €350 million hard-cap before the end of the year, the source added. It is understood that Park Hill is assisting ProA with the fundraising.

Park Hill declined to comment, while ProA did not respond to a request for comment at press time.

ProA typically invests in companies in Spain and Portugal which have an enterprise value of between €20 million and €200 million.

ProA creates value by developing business platforms both through buying and consolidating companies with similar activity and through driving and financing the organic growth of companies, according to the firm’s website.

In 2007, the firm raised €250 million for its maiden fund. That vehicle, which is fully invested, comprises of seven portfolio companies.

ProA was founded by a number of former N+1 Private Equity executives. Fernando Ortiz, ProA’s managing partner, was a former partner at N+1 Private Equity, a Spanish firm that has since merged with Mercapital and is now called N+1 Mercapital. Santiago Gómez and Carlos Gordillo, partners at ProA, also worked at N+1 before co-founding ProA, as well as Fernando Elío, an investment director at ProA. Another partner, Alberto Yanci, joined ProA in 2008 from Madrid-based Mercapital.

Investor appetite for Spain has improved in recent months. In June, PEI revealed that Portobello Capital was nearing a final close on its third fund. The vehicle held a €337 million first close in June, ahead of its €300 million target. Madrid-based firm Corpfin Capital, which came to market last summer, has already collected more than half of its €200 million target for its fourth fund.

A number of other GPs are also attempting to collect capital for Iberia. Barcelona-based Miura Private Equity is targeting €200 million for its second fund, PEI revealed in May, while Sherpa Capital Gestion, a Spanish firm that focuses on distressed and special situations, is currently raising its second fund, PEI reported earlier.