ABRY gathers new fund

Media-focused buyout shop ABRY Partners has closed ABRY Senior Equity Investors III, raising $750 million from 90 limited partners, according to a regulatory filling.

The fund will provide mezzanine debt to back ABRY Partners’ buyouts, in addition to providing growth capital to mid-market media companies.

The firm will receive an initial management fee of 1.5% of total commitments, 1.5% of “capital under management after a limited investment period,” and carried interest of 20%, according to the filing.

Boston-based ABRY Partners specializes in media, communications, business and information services, making investments of $15 million to $50 million worth of mezzanine or senior equity capital per deal.

In March, the firm acquired RCN Corp., a broadband services provider, for about $1.2 billion, including the company’s debt, via ABRY Partners VI, a $1.35 billion buyout fund, and ABRY Senior Equity Investors III.

The San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System continued its support of the firm recently by pledging up to $20 million to the new vehicle. The limited partner previously provided a slug of $25 million to ABRY Advanced Securities Fund, which closed last year with $700 million earmarked for buying the debt of struggling media companies.

ABRY Senior Equity Investors II closed in 2005 with $650 million in capital commitments made by LPs such as the New York State Teachers Retirement System and the Pennsylvania State Employees’ Retirement System.

Andrew Banks and Royce Yudkoff founded ABRY Partners, whose name is an acronym of their initials, in 1989 after they left their positions as co-heads of the media practice at consultancy Bain & Co. —Nancy Gordon