Side Letter: Brook-Oak bosses talk, Abraaj latest, BNP Paribas hire

Just happened

Marks ‘n’ Flatt

In two exclusive interviews, Howard Marks (pictured right) of Oaktree Capital Management (see here) and Bruce Flatt of Brookfield Asset Management (see here) reflect on the announcement of the groundbreaking tie-up between the two firms. It transpires the industry luminaries have somewhat different views on the relevance of timing to the deal.

Marks, Oaktree’s co-chairman, says the sale of the firm he founded had nothing to do with timing, telling us that it was a “fundamental transaction” that “would have been right a year ago” or a “year from now”.

Flatt, Brookfield’s chief executive, views it differently. He says there was indeed a timing element to it. “Our view is that [Oaktree] is a great firm that can thrive in any environment,” he says. “Despite that, obviously when stress in credit is robust, they excel even more.”

Abraaj’s Naqvi denied bail

Arif Naqvi, founder of collapsed private equity firm Abraaj, was denied bail on Friday as he fights extradition to the US on fraud charges. The size of the alleged fraud, the involvement of the US government and Naqvi’s high-level political connections in Pakistan meant he was too great a flight risk, according to chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnot. On his arrest at Heathrow on 10 April, Naqvi gave the police seven contact phone numbers. One of them belonged to the president of Pakistan, Westminster magistrates’ court in London heard on Friday. Naqvi will be back in court on 24 May for a case management hearing.

Everstone eyes co-investors

One of South and South-East Asia’s biggest mid-market firms is hoping to increase its pool of potential co-investors with the appointment of a former UTIMCO director to its New York office, says Sanjoy Chatterjee, president of the Americas. Everstone has hired Suneel Kaji in part to build new co-investment relationships with domestic LPs. Kaji formerly founded a PE consultancy called Accordian Partners. The firm opened its New York office last year to expand its fundraising efforts globally as it gears up for its next fundraise. Last time it raised $730.5 million in 2015 for Everstone Capital III.


Paris bound. Richard Clarke-Jervoise, formerly head of private equity for multi-family office Stonehage Fleminghas been hired to lead PE for the wealth management unit of BNP Paribas, which has €361 billion in assets under management.

Glass, door. Eric Glass, who managed more than 50 percent of Arizona State Retirement System’s private markets and equities portfolio, has quit. He has co-founded Fortuitous Partners to raise multiple project-driven opportunity zone funds focused on developing sports infrastructure and affordable housing.

LP meetings. It’s Monday, so here are some LP meetings to watch out for this week.

Dig deeper

Want more data? There are more than 6,700 institutions in our database, including BrookfieldOaktreeBNP ParibasAbraaj and Everstone from today’s Side Letter.

She said it

“It’s a labour of love.”

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development’s director for equity funds Anne Fossemalle describes the job of seeding fund managers in difficult geographies such as the Central and Eastern Europe region.

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Today’s letter was prepared by Toby MitchenallAdam LeRod JamesAlex LynnAndrew Hedlund and Preeti Singh.

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