SI 30: Europe gains ground while Asia drops off

Fundraising by Europe-headquartered managers rose by almost one quarter in this year's exclusive ranking of the top 30 secondaries firms.

Fundraising for secondaries is at record highs, with at least $24 billion raised in the first half of this year for private equity and almost $190 billion raised by the top 30 managers over the last five years.

Amid the healthy fundraising environment, the composition the firms that made our second SI 30 ranking is changing.

The amount of capital raised by Europe-headquartered firms in this year’s list rose 23 percent to almost $69 billion from around $55 billion last year, more than any other region by value. They accounted for eight of the 30 managers, with notable final closes in the last 12 months including AlpInvest Partners‘ $6.5 billion for AlpInvest Secondaries Program VI and Paris-based Committed Advisors‘ €1 billion for its third fund.

Meanwhile in Asia, where some players such as Canada Pension Plan Investment Board have ramped up operations in expectation of an uptick in dealflow, there were no Asia-headquartered firms in this year’s SI 30 – a sign that limited partner appetite for secondaries in the region is still dwarfed by strategies focusing on Europe and North America.

Final closes for Asia-Pacific funds over the past four years have been sporadic, and there were no final closes for Asia-Pacific dedicated funds in the second half of 2016 or first half of 2017.

“The secondary market in Asian assets is still limited,” Ardian’s UK head Olivier Decannière wrote in the firm’s annual report for 2016. “Everyone is looking but it’s harder to find high-quality portfolios and coverage of the market is not as detailed, especially at the level of local market funds and among small caps.”

US-headquartered managers remained the largest source of capital, with 17 firms accounting for 52 percent of the almost $190 billion raised since 2012, little changed in percentage terms from last year’s ranking.

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