Two-thirds of all US PE buyouts is a hefty proportion, but 1Q figures saw PE firms shatter any notion that was as high as they could ever go. In the 1Q 2018 US PE Breakdown, our research analysts delve through the latest datasets to examine PE firms' unquenched enthusiasm for buy-and-build.
Coming off the strongest year in a decade, PE fundraising decelerated sharply in 1Q 2018, totaling just $36.6 billion raised across 55 vehicles. Larger funds remain prominent, with vehicles of $1 billion or more taking in more than half of the capital raised in the first quarter.
IPOs were a relatively popular exit route for PE-backed companies in 1Q 2018, despite the volatility in equity markets. The 12 offerings in the first quarter marked the third-highest total over the last two years.
Add-ons accounted for 70% of all buyout activity in 1Q 2018. Buy-and-build strategies have become more common in the last decade as competition has intensified for private assets, rendering the paydown of debt and multiple expansion less useful than they once were.