Welsh Carson sails to $2.5bn first close

After just four months, the veteran New York private equity firm has drawn significant investor commitments for its eleventh fund.

Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe has reached a first close on its eleventh private equity fund, rounding up a total of $2.5 billion (€1.58 billion), according to an investor source.

The New York firm expects to close on roughly $4 billion before the end of the year. Welsh Carson’s previous private equity fund, Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe X, closed on $3.4 billion in 2005.

The firm focuses exclusively on information and business services and healthcare. Founded in 1979, the firm still includes co-founders Russell Carson, the former chief executive of Citicorp Venture Capital, and Bruce Anderson, an executive with Automatic Data Processing. The firm's co-presidents are Anthony de Nicola and Paul Queally.

Welsh Carson has 15 general partners and 14 members of its resources group.

Among the distinguishing features of the firm is its habit of partnering with portfolio company management teams again and again. According to Welsh Carson’s web site, 40 percent of its portfolio companies are led by management teams working for their second, third or fourth time with Welsh Carson.

The firm typically takes controlling stakes in its investments.