J-STAR closes $200m Japan fund

The Japan buyout firm, founded by Gregory Hara, has made a final close on $200 million for its second fund.

Private equity firm J-STAR has made a final close on its second private equity vehicle on its hard cap of JPY 20 billion (€153 million; $201 million), according to a company statement.

The firm raised JPY 11.6 billion-worth of the commitments from domestic investors, with the balance coming from international sources of capital. 

J-STAR targets Japan's mid-market companies and plans to invest in 10 companies from the fund with deal sizes between JPY 1 billion and JPY 10 billion. 

“Especially in the mid-to-small market, we see an increasing demand for [capital] solutions to be provided,” the firm said in the statement.

Especially in the mid-to-small market, we see an increasing demand for [capital] solutions to be provided

J-STAR statement

J-STAR has so-far invested in 17 companies since its founding in 2006. Earlier in July, it invested JPY 1 billion in Tokai Trim Holdings, a domestic car and motorcycle seat manufacturer, according to a company statement.  

The acquisition was a co-investment with the Supply Chain Support Fund, a joint vehicle launched by Japan Auto Parts Industries Association and the Development Bank of Japan. 

J-STAR’s fund closing comes after several exits in the last 12 months. In January, it sold its investment in clothing company Olive des Olive in a trade sale to Takisada Osaka, a Japanese textile wholesaler, gaining a 3x return Private Equity International reported earlier. 

In October 2012, the firm also exited its majority holding in medical services business Apo Plus gaining a “more than three times” return, a source close to the matter told PEI earlier. 

Established in February 2006, J-Star is a private equity investment company focusing on mid-market buyouts in Japan. J-STAR won Firm of the year in Japan in the PEI Awards 2012.