Ardian has closed its second growth equity fund on €230 million (about $284 million), more than tripling the size of its predecessor, which raised €70 million in 2014. The firm will use the cash to make both minority and majority investments of up to €25 million, operating primarily in Western Europe.
The vehicle is
one of 12 growth funds to close across the US and Europe so far this year, per the PitchBook Platform. Here's a rundown of some of 2018's more notable growth equity efforts:
While those fundraising numbers are in line with historical figures in terms of both dollars and fund count, they pale in comparison to the spike in growth fundraising that occurred during 4Q 2017. In those three months alone, firms in the US and Europe raised more than $15.8 billion across 23 vehicles, per PitchBook data, both of which are easily highs from any quarter during the past five years.
The largest effort to close that quarter was TPG Growth Fund IV, which wrapped up with $3.7 billion in commitments in December. Olympus Partners also raised more than $3 billion for a fund of its own, while KKR, Apax Partners and Spectrum Equity were among the other firms to top the $1 billion mark for growth vehicles.
Believe it or not, more than 20% of all growth funds to raise $1 billion or more in the six years since the start of 2012 closed during 4Q 2017. It's a clear encapsulation of the fundraising frenzy that engulfed private equity throughout most of last year.
Ardian, meanwhile, has closed 15 investments so far this year, per the PitchBook Platform. Among the priciest was a reported $1.1 billion takeover of airport equipment maker Alvest in conjunction with Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec.