Saints Capital raises total of $460m

The San Francisco buyer of direct secondary interests in venture-backed companies has closed two side-by-side funds and acquired six companies from Safeguard Scientifics for $100 million.

San Francisco-based Saints Capital has closed Saints Capital VI on $300 million (€197 million) to target direct stakes in venture-backed companies acquired on the secondary market. In addition, the firm closed a side vehicle with $160 million in commitments to target what founder and managing director Ken Sawyer termed “significant opportunities”.

Saints Capital V closed on $100 million in 2005 and its funds’ current investments total over $500 million. The firm has approximately 20 limited partners which are largely funds of funds and pension plans as well as one secondary firm.

Ken Sawyer

In conjunction with the fund closes, the firm has acquired stakes in six “legacy partner companies” from publicly traded venture firm Safeguard Scientifics for $100 million. In addition, Saints will relieve Safeguard of $31.5 million in debt guarantees concerning certain of the companies.

“Our direct secondary investment approach is designed to benefit both the seller and its investee companies,” said Sawyer in a statement. “Because of this unique investment approach, we are able to allow Safeguard to achieve a meaningful and complete restructuring with one transaction.”

In the transaction, expected to close in the second quarter of 2008, Saints will acquire three majority and three minority positions. The companies Safeguard is selling are: Acsis, Alliance Holdings Group Associates, Laureate Pharma, NextPoint Networks, Neuronyx and ProModel Corporation.

Saints Capital, founded in 2000, is a direct secondary acquirer of venture and private equity investments in emerging growth companies globally. Saints makes direct venture investments on a primary basis as well.