Ardian’s 2017 activity

The firm closed its ASF VI Energy fund on $283m, including co-investments.

Ardian invested $6.4 billion in secondaries deals last year, closing 14 transactions.

The Paris-headquartered firm’s fund of funds group distributed $5.8 billion to investors, according to its Activity Report 2017. Its transactions comprised eight secondaries, four early secondaries and two infrastructure secondaries deals.

The firm’s ASF VII fund, which includes $10.8 billion for secondaries, was 67 percent invested as of 31 December.

Headline deals the firm invested in 2017 include the $2.5 billion stapled transaction with Mubadala Capital which it syndicated with global LPs, and a $900 million portfolio from the UK’s Universities Superannuation Scheme.

Last year Ardian also closed its ASF VI Energy fund on $283 million, including co-investments, and had completed two deals from the fund as of December.

“Now that excess capacity has been removed and the weaker assets have been written down we see it as an opportune moment to be more active on the secondary front [in energy],” Benoît Verbrugghe, head of Ardian US, said in the report.

On real estate secondaries, Ardian plans to buy portfolios of interests in funds rather than direct holdings “if and when” it moves into the strategy, Verbrugghe noted.

The firm is also actively managing its portfolio, including recapitalisations on parts of its portfolios where the debt level is modest, head of fund of funds Vincent Gombault noted.

“If we think we’ve seen most of the appreciation in a portfolio, we will sell it and return the cash to our LPs so they can look at better opportunities,” Gombault said. “We’re using all the tools available to manage our positions more actively.”

Ardian deployed $1.5 billion in primary commitments across 24 funds, the report noted.

The firm is seeking $12 billion for its latest flagship vehicle, ASF VIII, as Secondaries Investor reported in May.

Secondaries deals in 2017 reported by Ardian

Seller Transaction Deal size Closing date
Sovereign wealth Fund 14 LP interests, 14 direct interests $2.5bn March
North American pension fund 11 LP interests $1.4bn September
European pension fund 8 LP interests $872m December
European financial institution 2 LP interests €219m October
European investment firm 3 LP interests €77m April
N/A 1 LP interest (late primary) $51m September
European financial institution 2 LP interests €320m September
Various sellers 1 LP interest €34m December


Source: Ardian