Why CalPERS is eyeing Silver Lake duo for directs top jobs

The Silver Lake alumni in contention could point to the pension's highly successful investment in the tech specialist.

Two candidates being considered to lead the California Public Employees’ Retirement System direct business appear to have history on their side.

The US’s largest public pension is in talks with Silver Lake co-founder David Roux and senior adviser Adam Grosser to lead its “Horizon” and “Innovation” teams respectively, Bloomberg reported last week. Horizon would seek to invest $10 billion in up to 10 consumer or industrial businesses, while the latter team would deploy the same amount in late-stage venture capital companies.

CalPERS has historic ties to Silver Lake, having acquired a 9.9 percent stake worth $275 million in 2008. The investment is understood to have been fully divested as of 2017.

The pension is likely to remember the relationship fondly. Silver Lake Tech Associates III, understod to be an entity through which CalPERS’ held the stake, had delivered an 8.03x net multiple and 348.5 percent net internal rate of return as of 30 June, according to CalPERS documents. Silver Lake Tech Associates Sumeru, another related entity, delivered a 3.02x and 96 percent net IRR, the documents noted.

– This article was updated to reflect Adam Grosser’s position as senior adviser to Silver Lake, rather than a partner.