Wisconsin commits $420m to private equity

The $83bn retirement system committed to five funds in the third quarter, including up to $100m each for Leonard Green & Partners, Providence Equity Partners and Vista Equity Partners.

The State of Wisconsin Investment Board committed $420 million to private equity between July and September, according to documents recently released by the $83 billion retirement system.

Wisconsin made five commitments in the time period, including three $100 million allocations to Green Equity Investors VI, Providence Equity Partners VII and Vista Equity Partners Fund IV.

Wisconsin also committed $70 million to Oakhill Capital Management’s third European principal fund and $50 million to Kohlberg & Company’s seventh investors fund.

Vista is en route to hitting its $3.3 billion hard-cap, according to a person with knowledge of the fundraising. The firm recently held a third close on $2.8 billion, well over its $2.5 billion target.

Green recently changed the terms on its sixth fund, targeting $5 billion, increasing transaction fees it will use to offset the management fee paid by limited partners to 100 percent, according to a letter the firm sent to LPs. Fund VI will make $100 million to $500 million investments in the US retail, consumer products, distribution, media, business services and healthcare sectors. 

Providence is targeting $6 billion on its fund. The firm recently scored a 5x exit return when it drew down on its investment in German cable company Kabel Deutschland, which raised €760 million in an initial public offering last year.

The retirement system committed $380 million across eight private equity funds in the second quarter. Last year, Wisconsin replaced private equity consultant Hamilton Lane with the StepStone Group. The retirement system has a 6 percent allocation to the asset class.