TPG hires Pantheon partner to co-lead global secondaries unit

The top-level hire will work with co-head Michael Woolhouse to build out the firm's secondaries team, Secondaries Investor has learned.

TPG, the world’s fourth-biggest private equity firm according to the PEI 300, has hired one of Pantheon‘s top executives as it continues to build-out its in-house secondaries team.

Matt Jones, a partner and co-head of Pantheon’s global secondaries team, is set to join the San Francisco and Fort Worth-headquartered firm as a co-managing partner of its global secondaries business, according to three sources familiar with the matter.

Jones will be based in London and will co-lead US and European secondaries with Michael Woolhouse, who joined the firm last summer to launch the effort.

His start date is understood to be yet to be determined.

A spokesman for TPG declined to comment.

A spokeswoman for Pantheon said the firm was sad to see Jones depart but that it understood him taking advantage of an entrepreneurial opportunity.

Jones – a two decade veteran of Pantheon – has been leading the firm’s secondaries presence in Europe and is a member of its international investment committee, according to Pantheon’s website. He will join a team of at least four other professionals, led by Woolhouse, who joined the firm last year from CPP Investments to spearhead its strategy launch.

At Pantheon, Dennis McCrary, a partner who is head of investment management, will take on the role of co-head of global secondaries with a focus on the European leadership team. That team includes partners Petra Bukovec and Elly Livingstone and principal Charlotte Morris.

Pantheon has a well-seasoned team of secondaries investment professionals who have an average tenure of 15 years at the firm, the firm’s spokeswoman told Secondaries Investor.

In an interview for affiliate title Private Equity International‘s GP-led Secondaries Special report last month, Woolhouse said the LP-led and GP-led markets have evolved to a point where they are very different businesses, and that the future of GP-leds is increased sector expertise.

“This market is craving specialisation,” Woolhouse said. “The underwriting capabilities and people that you need – it’s a totally different business on the GP-led side when buying a single company.”

TPG had begun speaking to investors about raising as much as $2 billion for its dedicated secondaries fund, affiliate title Buyouts reported in December.

TPGAres Management and Brookfield Asset Management have all launched or acquired secondaries businesses in the last 10 months, as Secondaries Investor has reported. On Tuesday, Secondaries Investor reported that Apollo Global Management had also begun a search for professionals to launch an investment business focusing on the strategy.