Ares uses Landmark platform to launch 40 Act fund

The fund targeted at non-institutional investors can invest in the full range of secondaries deals and on a primary and direct basis.

Ares Management Corporation is to launch a private equity vehicle for non-institutional investors, with recent acquisition Landmark Partners central to the strategy.

Ares Landmark Private Markets Fund will invest in a diversified portfolio of private assets acquired “principally” on a secondary basis, while also making primary commitments and direct investments in the equity and debt of private companies, the alternatives manager said in a prospectus filed last week with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The fund will be able to invest in portfolios of LP stakes and GP-led deals, including single-asset processes, the prospectus said. It will also back preferred equity transactions.

The fund can target private equity, private credit, venture capital, infrastructure and real estate and will have a small allocation to liquid assets, such as cash, fixed income and exchange-traded funds.

The vehicle, known as a 40 Act fund, is open to those defined by the SEC as accredited investors and qualified clients. Investors can buy shares in the vehicle, with an initial $1 million-worth to be issued, the prospectus noted.

The minimum investment, fee burden, date of first close and targeted size are not noted in the document and Ares did not respond to a request for information.

In March, Ares acquired Landmark Partners in a $1.08 billion deal. The secondaries buyer became the fifth strand of Ares’ business, alongside private equity, private credit, real estate and strategic initiatives.

Last month, Ares chief executive Michael Arougheti described the secondaries market as “the best way” to introduce alternatives into 401(k) defined contribution and defined benefit plans, adding that the firm was actively considering how to deliver its secondaries product into retail channels.

There are other 40 Act funds that invest in secondaries, including Pomona Investment Fund, which had average net assets under management of $237 million, according to its annual report published at the end of March.

High-net-worth investors could represent an additional $1.5 trillion-worth of private assets under management by 2025, according to a June report by Morgan Stanley.