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Top 10 Private Equity Firms in 2015

by Anthony Leung

  • 29 Jan 2016
  • PE

According to Preqin’s Buyout Deals Analyst module on Private Equity Online, Carlyle Group has been the most active private equity firm in 2015, participating in 69 transactions – up by six on the previous year.  Notable deals in 2015 that Carlyle Group took part in include the acquisition of software firm Veritas for $7.4bn and the $3bn add-on purchase of TE Connectivity's Telecom, Enterprise and Wireless businesses by its portfolio company, CommScope.

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, Ardian, Warburg Pincus, Riverside Company and Blackstone Group all made a return appearance in the top 10 in terms of number of transactions. Ardian, the only European representative, increased its buyout deal activity by 5% in 2015 with investments including the add-on of UK toy store Hamleys by its portfolio company C.banner and French travel & tourism company Club Méditerranée.

Dell, a portfolio company of Silver Lake and MSD Capital, agreed to acquire the IT company EMC for $67bn in October 2015. Consequently, the aforementioned fund managers assumed the first and second place positions in the top 10 fund managers by aggregate deal size in 2015 respectively. Meanwhile, 3G Capital has been one of the largest investors for the third consecutive year, having contributed towards the $40bn merger between H.J. Heinz Company and Kraft Foods Group. Sequoia Capital, a traditionally venture capital-focused investor, was ninth in the table, due to its participation in the privatization of China’s Qihoo for $9.3bn.

Although not entirely unexpected, the majority of the international fund managers are headquartered in the US once again. Ardian, CVC Capital Partners and Permira were the only representatives based in Europe, while no Asia-based private equity firms featured in either list for 2015.

*Includes multi-investor deals

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