France-Based Private Equity Fund Managers – August 2014

by Kamarl Simpson

  • 13 Aug 2014
  • PE

With PAI Partners on the verge of completing a €2.5bn second closing for its latest and planned to be largest fund offering to date, this blog will take a look at private equity fundraising by managers based in France. 

Preqin’s Fund Manager Profiles online service shows there are currently 218 active firms based in France; 100 of these firms focus on buyout investments either exclusively or part of a broader strategy, and 71 firms focus specifically on venture capital deals (including early stage, expansion/late stage and general venture capital). Meanwhile, Preqin’s Funds in Market online service reveals that France-based managers account for just over 14% of the aggregate €629bn (excluding real estate and infrastructure funds) raised by fund managers based in Europe over the last decade. 

The top five France-based fund managers, ranked by aggregate capital raised over the last decade, are Ardian, PAI Partners, Astorg Partners, Access Capital Partners and LBO France. In the past 10 years these five firms have raised an aggregate €43bn in capital, which amounts to 51% of the total capital raised by all 218 private equity firms based in France. 

Private equity fund of funds focused, Ardian, has secured €30bn (excluding capital raised by infrastructure vehicles), equating to 35% of total capital raised by all firms headquartered in France, over the last decade; the firm also has an estimated €13bn in dry powder available to invest. Ardian, formerly known as AXA Private Equity invests across Europe, North America, and Asia and engages in a range of investment strategies including buyout, secondaries, fund of funds, and infrastructure. In April 2014, the firm completed fundraising for Ardian Secondary Fund VI, the largest secondaries fund ever raised totalling $9bn. For further information relating to the secondaries market please see Preqin’s recently released report: Secondary Market for Alternative Assets: A Seller’s Market

PAI Partners is the second largest manager based in France. The firm is dedicated to buyout investments across Europe, with a focus on five industries: food & consumer goods, retail & distribution, business services, healthcare, and general industrials. PAI Partners is currently in market with PAI Europe VI seeking €3bn. The firm, established in 1994, has raised €6.8bn in the last 10 years and has an estimated €1.5bn in uncalled capital.

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