Preqin’s Fund Manager Profiles online service currently profiles 8,811 active private equity fund managers, 435 of which have held either an interim or final close on a private equity fund so far in 2015. The table below shows the fund managers that have raised the most capital this year-to-date, including capital raised by funds in market that have held at least one interim close.
Unsurprisingly, Blackstone Group tops the league table with $37.4bn in capital commitments to four vehicles. This is in no small part due to the behemoth Blackstone Capital Partners VII, a buyout vehicle that held its first close in the first week of May on $17bn. The fund has been in market since November 2014 and is only $500mn away from reaching its target size. The firm has also held final closes for the largest ever closed-end real estate vehicle (Blackstone Real Estate Partners VIII, $14.5bn) and its second multibillion-dollar natural resources fund (Blackstone Energy Partners, $4.5bn).
Fund managers Lexington Partners and TPG took second and third place respectively in terms of capital raised so far this year. Unlike the other firms in the top five, Lexington Partners had only one vehicle fundraising in 2015, with Lexington Capital Partners VIII accumulating $10.1bn at final close, significantly above its $8bn target. For TPG, the majority of this capital has come from TPG Partners VII, which held a first close on $6.5bn in February. TPG’s investment strategy focuses on a diverse range of opportunities on a global scale, with the firm estimated to have $15bn in dry powder waiting to be invested.
Household names such as Carlyle Group, Encap Investments and Lone Star Funds also appear in the list, which is unsurprising given the prominence of the buyout, real estate and natural resources investment strategies. Fund managers with strong track records and established teams are in no short supply of LPs looking to put capital to use via private equity fund structures. Following a recent history of strong returns and high distributions, large and established managers in particular are likely to continue to see a healthy LP appetite for the remainder of 2015.