Singapore hedge fund launches PE arm

Dymon Asia Private Equity held a first close on S$203 million on its debut fund just a month after launching, with significant backing from Temasek.

Singapore-based hedge fund Dymon Asia has launched a separate private equity arm to invest in small and medium-sized enterprises in Southeast Asia, and has already completed a first close of S$203 million (€129 million; $166 million) on its first fund, with significant backing from a Temasek-owned firm.

The fund, called Dymon Asia Private Equity, was officially launched in September, and is targeting $300 million. Heliconia Capital Management, an investment firm wholly-owned by sovereign wealth fund Temasek, has already committed S$100 million to the fund, Keith Tan, one of the founding partners of the hedge fund Dymon Asia Capital, told PE Asia.

The remaining S$103 million came from various Singaporean and Hong Kong investors, mostly high-net-worth individuals, Tan said.

The fund will be regionally focused on Southeast Asia, and is targeting an average deal size of between S$10 – S$50 million. These are businesses “which are experiencing strong growth but are in need of capital”, he said.

Tan, one of the founding partners of Dymon's hedge fund, has moved over to the private equity arm as managing partner. Although the partners of the new private equity firm have come from the hedge fund, Tan said that it has a separate management team dedicated solely to private equity, and the hedge fund is not involved in the day-to-day management of the firm.

Tan also believes that much of his experience in the hedge fund will be relevant to his work in private equity. Specifically, since launching Dymon Asia Capital in 2008 with Danny Yong, Tan has mostly been involved in the private sector, and he believes he can apply his experience in management and risk evaluation to private equity.