HarbourVest taps Goldman, Helios for VP hires

Yassin Knocke and William Thompson will focus on analysing, structuring and monitoring private equity secondaries investments from the firm's London office.

HarbourVest Partners has added a pair of vice-presidents to its secondaries team in London.

Yassin Knocke joins from Helios Investment Partners, where he was a vice-president focused on evaluating and executing private equity investments in emerging markets. Prior to that he held associate roles in the investment banking divisions of JP Morgan and Nomura.

William Thompson joins after seven years with Goldman Sachs‘s investment banking arm, where he was an executive director focusing on M&A in the healthcare sector. Prior to that he was senior analyst in the healthcare banking division at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey.

Both will focus on analysing, structuring and monitoring private equity secondaries opportunities, according to HarbourVest’s website.

“There’s been a significant increase in single-asset transactions and more concentrated portfolios,” managing director Jeffrey Keay told Secondaries Investor. “The space between the direct investing world and the secondary world has started to get smaller…The skill set and the experiences that a direct investor has are a lot more applicable to the secondaries space than they were 10 years ago.”

HarbourVest is in market with its flagship secondaries fund Dover Street X, targeting as much as $6.5 billion. The fund has a 0.75 percent annual management fee, carried interest on invested profits of 12.5 percent and a preferred rate of return of 8 percent, according to a document presented to the Ventura County Employees’ Retirement Association.

Deals HarbourVest has backed this year include the acquisition of a majority stake in Amadeus Capital Partners’ Digital Prosperity Fund I and a related co-investment vehicle for $87 million, as well as a stapled deal involving Investcorp’s 2007-vintage technology fund.