Partners Group raises $1.1bn for Asia-Pacific

The Switzerland-based firm was targeting $1bn for its second Asia-focused ‘programme’, a series of vehicles which will invest in primary funds and secondary transactions and also partner on direct investments.

Partners Group has closed its second dedicated Asia-Pacific “programme” on more than $1.1 billion, exceeding its $1 billion target. Its first vehicle dedicated to the region, Asia-Pacific 2005, held its final close in March 2006 at $378 million and is now fully invested.

The firm’s second Asia-Pacific “programme” is a series of vehicles which will pursue a “balanced strategy” across the entire Asia-Pacific region, investing in “leading” primary funds, secondary transactions and direct deals alongside local partners, the firm said.

Partners Group’s ability to navigate a “difficult” fundraising environment was due to its experience and track record, Philipp Gysler, Asia head at Partners Group, told sister publication PEI Asia.

The firm’s approach allows it to “flatten the J-Curve”, Gysler said. “In past programmes it has allowed us to essentially eliminate the J-Curve.”

Gysler said he expected “at least two-thirds” of the money to be invested in primary funds, with up to 30 percent to be split between secondary opportunities and direct investments. The vehicle has already committed to one secondary transaction.

Roughly half of the fund will be put into growth opportunities, principally focusing on India and China, though Gysler stressed that mature markets like Australia and Japan would not be left out.

“The anticipated growth in emerging Asia offers compelling opportunities for buyouts and growth investments striving to improve margins and achieve high organic growth rates,” he said in a statement. “Entry multiples have started to lower gradually across the region due to the credit crisis, investments have become cheaper as the currencies have depreciated and small and medium size enterprises are increasingly opening up to private equity financing as banks have tightened lending standards.

“Going forward, we see high potential especially in those industries less exposed to global trade and more reliant on domestic, internal demand.”

Partners Group’s second Asia Pacific vehicle sourced commitments from corporate and public pension plans, insurance companies and family offices from the USA, the UK, continental Europe and Asia.