After US private equity fundraising posted its strongest year in a decade in 2017, it was always going to be hard for GPs to keep pace with last year's totals in 1Q. And sure enough, the two biggest funds of the quarter were raised in Europe.
Even so, the average and median buyout prices in the US continued to rise, thanks to a variety of factors ranging from increased competition for private companies to a lack of viable targets, low interest rates and a mostly robust economy. Finding a viable exit strategy remained a challenge—though businesses in certain sectors, such as IT, had less trouble attracting buyers. And total exit count received a boost from a small group of failed pre-recession buyouts that GPs finally exited after a decade-plus of ownership.
For a full picture of the figures that defined the US private equity industry in 1Q, check out our latest PitchBook datagraphic: