Glendower raises one of the largest first-time PE funds

Glendower Capital Secondary Opportunities Fund IV has held a final close on $2.7bn, above its target of $2.5bn, leapfrogging two Chinese GPs to the top spot.

Glendower Capital, which spun out of Deutsche Asset Management in 2017, has raised one of the largest ever first-time private equity funds.

The secondaries firm has held a $2.7 billion final close on Glendower Capital Secondary Opportunities Fund IV against a hard-cap of $2.5 billion, according to a statement seen by Secondaries Investor.

“We are honoured and very grateful for the strong support of our existing investors, as well as the new investors that joined our program,” said CEO and managing partner Carlo Pirzio-Biroli. “We have more than doubled the size of our team since the firm’s founding and significantly invested in resources to continue strengthening our platform.”

The private funds team at Debevoise & Plimpton served as legal counsel, the statement adds.

Fund IV hit a $1.3 billion first close in May 2018, Secondaries Investor reported. Investors include Public School Retirement System of the City of St Louis and Montgomery County Public Schools Pension Fund, according to PEI data.

A handful of first-time funds have broken the $3 billion mark but these were set up by corporates, such as Chinese tech giant Baidu, or by state-backed investment firms.

The previous largest debut fund by an independent manager was raised by DCP Capital, set up by former co-head of KKR Asia David Liu, which amassed $2.5 billion in April. Hopu Investment Management, also headquartered in Beijing, gathered $2.5 billion for Hopu Master Fund I in 2008.

All 17 members of Deutsche Asset Management’s secondaries team spun out to form Glendower Capital in July 2017, Secondaries Investor reported. The senior team comprises managing partners Pirzio-Biroli and Charles Smith, and partners Chi Cheung, Deirdre Davies, Adam Graev and Josh Glaser.

Glendower began investing Fund IV last year. Last week the firm acquired a large minority stake in high-end UK department store Liberty from its owner Bluegem Capital via a single asset restructuring, Secondaries Investor reported. The deal valued Liberty at £300 million ($364.7 million; €327 million).

Secondaries funds in market were seeking at least $87 billion as of July, according to Secondaries Investor‘s fundraising data download published on Monday.