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GI Partners closes Fund II on $1.45bn

GI Partners, a trans-Atlantic private equity firm, has raised $1.45bn from investors including CalPERS, ATP and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

GI Partners, an international buyout firm, has held a final closing of its second private equity fund at $1.45 billion (€1.14 billion).

 

Mark Tagliaferri, a managing director of GI Partners Europe, said that the firm began marketing the fund last September with a first close at the time of $800 million.

 

Tagliaferri said that investors in Fund II included CalPERS, CalSTERS, The University of Oregon, ATP and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. Lazard was the placement agent for the fundraising.

 

Although significantly larger than its $526 million predecessor, GI Partners Fund II will follow Fund I’s strategy of investment between $50 million and $250 million of equity per transaction in US and Western Europe companies in sectors including leisure, retail, financial services and logistics.

 

“The strategy hasn’t changed,” said Tagliaferri. “The bigger fund allows us to build out some of the strategies we started in the first fund. For instance, we bought and sold Yates from our first fund. If the fund had been bigger, we might have been able to build Yates to a larger size before selling it. We’ll be pursuing that strategy in Fund II with our recent investment in the pubs sector.”

 

GI Partners sold UK wine bar chain Yates to an investment vehicle controlled by property investor Robert Tchenquiz for £200 million in May 2005. Last month, the firm paid £571 million for 290 managed pubs from Punch Taverns through its wholly-owned subsidiary Orchid Pubs.

 

Tagliaferri said that Fund II is now approximately 40 percent invested following the Punch Taverns transaction. Tagliaferri also confirmed that Fund I has returned twice the money invested and has an IRR of 40 percent.