Large-Cap Firm of the Year in Asia

  1. KKR
  2. Bain Capital

KKR is recognised in this category for the ninth time since it was introduced in 2010. The global firm is understood to have deployed $3.3 billion across 10 Asian private equity deals last year, including India’s Advanta Seeds and Chinese pet hospital chain Ruichen. It is also understood to have completed two full or partial private equity investment exits and two portfolio company IPOs, including Indonesian giant GoTo.

Mid-Market Firm of the Year in Asia

  1. Everstone
  2. Nippon Sangyo Suishin Kiko
  3. Navis Capital Partners

India and Southeast Asia specialist Everstone won its sixth gong in this category after a year in which it completed three investments and three exits, including the sale of PT Sari Burger Indonesia to Restaurant Brands Asia for $183 million, and the acquisition of a controlling stake in Indian pharmaceuticals company Softgel Healthcare.

Limited Partner of the Year in Asia

  1. GIC
  2. Temasek
  3. Taiwan Life Insurance

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund was recognised for the first time since 2014 in this category. GIC has since become known in the private equity world for two things: its seemingly insatiable appetite for the asset class, and its propensity to fly under the radar. Its roughly 13 percent allocation to PE made it the world’s second-largest investor globally in PEI’s most recent Global Investor 100 ranking.

Deal of the Year in Asia

  1. TPG for iNova Pharmaceuticals
  2. Blackstone for Crown Resorts
  3. Bain Capital for Hitachi Metals

TPG won the nod in this category for its acquisition of pan-Asian business iNova Pharmaceuticals. The firm acquired the pharmaceuticals giant in July 2022 from exiting owners Carlyle Group and Pacific Equity Partners. TPG made a majority investment alongside co-investors, with PEP reinvesting as a minority shareholder.

Exit of the Year in Asia

  1. Carlyle Group for SBI Card
  2. Advantage Partners for CosmoLife
  3. CPE Capital for StraitNZ

Carlyle was recognised for Exit of the Year in Asia for its barnstorming exit from Indian finance business SBI Card in 2022. It is understood the firm acquired a 20 percent stake in SBI Card for 19.7 billion rupees ($237.9 million; €222.7 million) in 2017 and has made 215.4 billion rupees of sale proceeds since its listing in 2020. During Carlyle’s investment period, the number of accounts with SBI Card increased from 1.2 million in 2017 to reach 3.6 million in 2022.

Fundraise of the Year in Asia

  1. Blackstone
  3. Qiming Venture Partners

Raising any fund last year was no mean feat; raising one for Asia – a market impacted by ongoing pandemic disruption and geopolitical tensions – may have been even harder. It is, then, all the more impressive that Blackstone was able to close its second APAC-dedicated private equity fund on $11 billion, surpassing its predecessor by nearly three times.

Firm of the Year in Australasia

  1. Blackstone
  2. Pacific Equity Partners
  3. Quadrant Private Equity

Blackstone’s reported $6.3 billion acquisition of Australia’s Crown Resorts in June 2022 was a collaboration between its private equity and real estate teams and represented the firm’s largest Asia-Pacific investment to date. This came in addition to its $400 million investment in Australian energy trading platform Xpansiv and the sale of two Blackstone assets: Australian non-bank lender La Trobe Financial and Kiwi insurer Partners Life.

Firm of the Year in China

  1. Sequoia China
  2. Qiming Venture Partners
  3. China Renaissance

If raising capital for China has become an almost insurmountable task in recent years, no one appears to have told this year’s firm of the year in the country, Sequoia China. The venture capital giant raised $3.2 billion for its 2022-vintage Sequoia Capital China Growth Fund VI, according to PEI data, and is reported to have closed several times that amount across a number of additional China funds.

Firm of the Year in India

  1. KKR
  2. Everstone
  3. Blackstone

Though a mainstay of our Asia categories, this is the first year KKR has won Firm of the Year in India. It is understood to have completed four Indian PE investments over the period, including a $300 million investment in agricultural solutions provider Advanta, and exited its position in Indian hospital chain Max Healthcare.

Firm of the Year in Japan

  1. Nippon Sangyo Suishin Kiko
  2. Bain Capital
  3. J-STAR

Taking home this award for the fourth time, NSSK completed or announced six new investments over the qualifying period. These included the acquisition in October 2022 of Sakura Pharmacy Group – its largest deal to date – as well as e-learning business MeLife and flexible packaging business Craftz in June.

Firm of the Year in Korea

  1. MBK Partners
  2. Crescendo Equity Partners
  3. STIC Investments

The North Asia veteran was recognised in this category for the fifth time overall and the first time since our 2019 awards. MBK, which has its headquarters in Seoul, completed two investments over the period, including manufacturing duo Dongjin Textile and Kyungjin Textile.

Firm of the Year in Southeast Asia

  1. KKR
  2. Everstone
  3. CVC Capital Partners

The global giant has taken home this award for seven years running. KKR is understood to have completed three Southeast Asian investments over the period; supported two portfolio company IPOs, including Indonesia’s GoTo Group; and added two partners heading new strategies in the region, recruiting Mukul Chawla from Temasek as head of growth equity and Macquarie’s Neil Arora as head of energy transition Asia-Pacific.

Fund of Funds Manager of the Year in Asia

  1. HarbourVest Partners
  2. LGT Capital Partners
  3. Asia Alternatives Management

This is HarbourVest’s third consecutive win since 2020 and fourth award for the category since 2014. The firm committed an aggregate of $1.2 billion across Asia-Pacific over the past year. This includes $569 million to 25 primary partnerships, 84 percent of which were oversubscribed; $463 million across 15 co-investment opportunities; and $139 million of secondaries transactions. The firm also opened an office in Sydney in September, its sixth base in Asia-Pacific.

Placement Agent of the Year in Asia

  1. Evercore
  2. Lazard Private Capital Advisory
  3. UBS

Evercore took the trophy this year for the category following a busy 2022. Last year, Evercore’s private funds group held a final close on J-Star No 5 on ¥75 billion ($576 million; €548 million), exceeding its ¥65 billion target, and held interim closes on another buyout fund totalling approximately $2.6 billion, bringing the cumulative total capital closed to about $3.2 billion in 2022. Evercore PFG has also been mandated on two further Asian buyout funds with a target of $6.2 billion between them.

Law Firm of the Year in Asia (Fund Formation)

  1. Kirkland & Ellis
  2. Clifford Chance
  3. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett

This represents the second consecutive win for Kirkland & Ellis in this category. In Asia over the year to end-October, Kirkland counselled clients on more than 19 fund closings, representing a total $38 billion in capital commitments. Highlights for the firm include advising Australia’s BGH Capital on the closing of its second private equity fund on A$3.6 billion ($2.5 billion, €2.3 billion).

Law Firm of the Year in Asia (Transactions)

  1. Kirkland & Ellis
  2. Ropes & Gray
  3. White & Case

Kirkland & Ellis has advised on some notable transactions in the region over the past year, most notably EQT on its €6.8 billion acquisition of Baring Private Equity Asia. It also counselled Blackstone, Bain Capital, Carlyle and others on a raft of private equity deals in the region.