First quarter transaction volume could hit $10bn

Committed Advisors’ managing partner Daniel Benin is one of the first to put a figure on what's expected to be a strong first quarter.

The secondaries market is bracing for a record first quarter of deal activity, according to French firm Committed Advisors.

“A year ago at the same time [transactions] were pretty slow…right now it’s the other way around! I would estimate the current pipeline could be between $5 billion and $10 billion,” said Committed Advisors managing director Daniel Benin.

Benin said the first quarter of 2014 could represent about 40 percent of total market transactions in 2013 but was impossible to predict if the rest of the year would provide the same level of activity.

Last year market Cogent Partners, Coller Capital and Setter Capital put the total market transaction volume around $28 billion for private equity secondaries, though activity in the first half of the year had been slow.

Benin said his outlook for 2014 was based on his knowledge of a full range of transactions across intermediated sales, dis-intermediated sales and direct sales.

“You have a number of transactions which are actively being intermediated and a number of sales being put up for sellers, not all necessarily being intermediated,” said Benin.

“The market is extremely active right now.”

Benin said if the distribution pace and the overall environment remained strong then sellers would prosper and the market would thrive on portfolio arbitrage as well as regulatory drivers for sales.

Last week Secondaries Investor revealed Committed Advisors had raised €350 million of its €400 million target for its Committed Advisors Secondary Fund II, which is already 15 to 20 percent invested and close to closing on its sixth deal.