ICG hails Brexit boost for alternatives

The firm now has $547m to deploy for its strategic secondaries fund, which targets GP-led transactions.

Listed investor Intermediate Capital Group has hailed the current environment of macroeconomic uncertainty as a strong driver for investor interest in alternatives.

“Arguably, the current macroeconomic uncertainty, including but not limited to the UK’s decision to leave the European Union in June – Brexit – may prolong and enhance the positive trend in favour of alternative asset classes,” the firm said last week as it reported its results for the six months ending 30 September 2016.

The firm raised €1.4 billion in the first half of the year across its strategies, including £1 billion ($1.2 billion; €1.2 billion) for its ICG Longbow Fund IV real estate fund, £146 million of which the firm says was raised in the three months after the UK’s decision to leave the EU in June.

ICG also reported “good progress” in raising its first “strategic secondaries” fund. The vehicle will invest in the GP-led “highly complex and structured” part of the secondaries market and the firm said last week it was expecting to hold a first close in the near future.

The secondaries strategy now has $547 million to deploy, some of which has already been put to work in three different transactions. ICG raised an additional $180 million in the first half of the year, bringing its total to $347 million of third party capital for the strategy which it is investing alongside $200 million of balance sheet capital.

“ICG now has a more diversified business than at any point in our history,” said Christophe Evain, chief executive of ICG, commenting on the firm’s fundraising across various strategies. “This is built on our expertise in understanding and valuing risks. We are highly experienced in both investing and managing investments in more volatile market conditions and we are well positioned to benefit from opportunities that arise.”