Private debt fundraising bounces back in Q2

Following a sluggish first quarter, private debt fundraisers enjoyed a far more fruitful period from April to the end of June.

Private debt fundraising notably shifted gear in the second quarter of 2016, with $31.4 billion of capital raised by closed-ended funds globally, according to the latest figures from Private Equity International's sister publication PDI Research & Analytics.

This took the total raised in the first half of the year to $46.8 billion and contrasted with a quiet first-quarter fundraising period in which just $15.4 billion was collected. 

The second-quarter boost was not quite sufficient to raise the first-half total as high as the $59.3 billion raised last year or the $52.8 billion first-half total in 2014. However, it is the third-highest first-half total since 2008. 

Altogether, $112.4 billion was raised by 155 closed-ended private debt funds last year. This was the second-highest annual total since 2008, surpassed only by the $119.1 billion raised in 2013. 

Of the near-$47 billion H2 2016 total, almost $19 billion was raised by funds with a global mandate. North America-focused funds accounted for more than $13 billion, those with a pan-European focus almost $7 billion, and those with a Western European focus almost $5 billion. 

Lone Star's $5.9 billion Real Estate Fund V , a distressed debt fund, was the largest of the 70 vehicles which closed in the first half of this year, followed by Ares Management's $2.8 billion Ares Capital Europe III senior debt fund. Funds raised by AllianceBernstein ($1.6 billion), Park Square Capital Partners ($1.3 billion), and Brown Brothers Harriman ($802 million) rounded out the top five. 

The latest data shows an ever-increasing amount of private debt fund capital waiting to be raised. At this time in 2014, funds in the market were targeting $32.4 billion; this took a big jump to $45.8 billion halfway through last year, and has now increased further to $53.1 billion. 

The fund with the biggest target currently courting investors is Oaktree Capital Management's Opportunities Fund Xb, which is aiming to raise $7.0 billion; followed by The Blackstone Group's GSO Capital Opportunities Fund III, with a $6.0 billion target.