SMAs bulk up BC’s credit debut

The fundraising comes amid a flurry of private equity firms launching credit arms.

BC Partners is “close to amassing” $700 million in its initial round of debt fundraising, a total that is tilted toward separately managed accounts, a source familiar with the situation said.

The funding consists of $500 million of SMAs and $200 million from a friends-and-family commingled fund, according to this person. That fund, BCP Special Situations Fund I, is a special situations vehicle and includes money from the firm's partners.

The source did not specify the profile of the limited partners that set up SMAs with the firm, which declined to comment on the fundraising.

The fund and SMAs come six months after the London-based firm announced the launch of its private debt group, which will be focused on the US and Europe and embrace an array of industries. It also fits BC credit head Ted Goldthorpe's background, which includes stints heading Apollo Investment Management's US opportunistic business and at Goldman Sachs' special situations group.

Other initial credit hires included Matthias Ederer, a former partner at Wingspan Investment Management, and Henry Wang, a former partner at Stonerise Capital Partners, who both joined the firm as partners.

BC has since expanded its credit personnel to include two associates, Graham Kohan and Mitch Schinbein, as well as a fund administrator, Joe Barillaro, according to the firm's website. BC Partners is based in London, while its credit team is based in New York.

BC's February launch of its credit arm presaged a number of firms that have done so over the summer, which include Thoma Bravo, a technology-focused private equity firm seeking $750 million for its first credit fund, and Capital Dynamics, a Zug, Switzerland-based equity investment firm.

BC Partners manages €18 billion across its Hamburg, London, New York and Paris offices. The firm's current equity portfolio companies include pet supply retailer PetSmart.