PEI Awards 2021: Who stood out in secondaries this year?

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the affiliate title Private Equity International‘s PEI Awards, the only honours in the industry decided solely by those in the industry, who vote in their thousands.

These annual awards have grown to 72 categories this year across all geographies and strategies, including 12 categories for secondaries.

This year PEI is getting the ball rolling by asking for your help. Click HERE to remind us of your firm’s achievements over the past 12 months – the deadline is Tuesday, 16 November, 2021.

The shortlists are drawn up in November by the PEI and Secondaries Investor global editorial team, which canvasses the views of colleagues and contacts in the market to find out which firms, funds and deals stood out during the year.

These reminders are, of course, no guarantee of success – but they help to ensure we have a fully rounded picture as we begin the process of deciding who will appear on our shortlists.

Frequently asked questions

When do I need to submit information?

The deadline for submissions is Tuesday, 16 November, 2021.

How much information should I submit?

We would always advise being as brief as possible. Four bullet points, including relevant data, is more valuable than three sides of text.

What information is useful?

This is an annual awards process, so information relating to your organisation’s activity over the past 12 months – from 1 November 2020 to end October 2021 – is key. Think about useful metrics: if you are advisory firm or a funds lawyer, how many funds have you advised and how much capital was raised? Which GPs or LPs have you worked with? If you are a GP, how active have you been in terms of transactions; what returns have exits generated and have you had some fundraising success?

Avoid unsupported general statements (“we have had another busy year/we are a leading firm”).

Brief and to the point is probably the best piece of advice we can offer. That means a maximum of 500 words per category you are submitting. We also require you to send us individual submissions for each category. Finally, all submissions need to be sent in PDF format.

Where do I submit?


Can I submit confidential information?

You can; please mark it as strictly confidential. It will then be taken into consideration and not published.

What are the categories?

Please see the full list below. Please note all secondaries awards are grouped together under their own section.

What goes into the categories?

It probably goes without saying that all award nominations are inherently subjective. Our choices take into account a mixture of qualitative and quantitative criteria, including non-financial considerations, when selecting what goes into each category. We are looking for evidence of how active, but also how innovative, a firm has been. To use a deal example, we don’t just nominate the biggest deals of the year – though these may well feature – we also look for transactions that are unique in some fashion.

For more detailed information on specific categories, please visit PEI.

Can I submit multiple entries?

Yes. Please create a separate entry for each category entered. If the information supplied is applicable to two or more categories, then please duplicate the same entry.

How do you draw up your shortlists?

Our shortlists are up based on two main factors: submissions from the industry, which we call for every year; and the editorial team’s expertise, drawn from our coverage and conversations with sources.

The end of our call for submissions is the hard deadline to consider eligible entries. That means that if a deal or a fund closes after our call for submissions deadline, it will not be eligible for that year’s PEI Awards.

The shortlist are independently compiled and nominated by our editorial team – we don’t rely on judges’ panels.

When will I find out if we are shortlisted?

The voting will open in early December, at which point you can see who has been short-listed in each category. Please visit and to check.

How are the winners decided?

The winners are decided by your votes, not by PEI editorial staff.

What are the key dates?

  • Tuesday, 2 November: call for submissions
  • Tuesday, 16 November: deadline for submissions
  • Early December: voting begins
  • Tuesday, 4 January 2022: voting ends
  • 1 March, 2022: award winners and runners up announced

The secondaries categories are:

  • Secondaries deal of the year in Europe
  • Secondaries firm of the year in Europe
  • Secondaries adviser of the year in Europe
  • Secondaries law firm of the year in Europe
  • Secondaries deal of the year in the Americas
  • Secondaries firm of the year in the Americas
  • Secondaries adviser of the year in the Americas
  • Secondaries law firm of the year in North America
  • Secondaries deal of the year in Asia
  • Secondaries firm of the year in Asia
  • Secondaries adviser of the year in Asia
  • Secondaries law firm of the year in Asia

CLICK HERE to access the submission form.