Advent International on course to wrap up $23bn Fund X next month

Advent's prior flagship fund was showing outsized performance as of September 2021, according to pension documents, with a 3x net multiple and a 129.4% net IRR.

Advent International is only weeks away from completing a 10th flagship buyout offering, one of the largest in the market.

Advent International GPE X, set to bring in $23 billion, is expected to hold a final closing in April, a Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management report said. The pension system, a long-time investor in Advent funds, is committing $350 million.

Advent itself expects Fund X to hit an upper limit of $25 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported. At $23 billion, the pool would still be the biggest in the Boston private equity firm’s 38-year history, exceeding the size of its 2019-vintage predecessor by 31 percent.

It is not clear if last year’s robust fundraising conditions will persist in 2022, as inflation, rate hikes, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and other factors inject uncertainty into the market. Limited partners have until now been responsive to brand-name sponsors returning more quickly with new offerings, often with larger tickets.

At present, there appear to be as many, if not more, mega-vehicles out there as in 2021. Along with Advent’s Fund X, they include Apollo Investment Fund X (targeting $25 billion); Carlyle Partners VIII ($22 billion); Thoma Bravo XV ($22 billion); Warburg Pincus Global Growth XIV ($16 billion); and KKR North America Fund XIII ($14 billion).

In addition, Blackstone’s Fund IX launched this quarter with a reported target of up to $30 billion. TPG’s ninth flagship fund is also underway with a target of $14 billion to $15 billion, while Hellman & Friedman may roll out an 11th flagship later this year, Buyouts reported.

Advent’s Fund X is part of a series that stretches back to the early 1990s. It will maintain the strategy of prior vehicles, making control investments in North American, European and Asian companies in business and financial services, healthcare, industrial, retail, consumer and leisure and technology sectors. Equity check sizes will run from $100 million to $2 billion or greater.

Advent has specialized in each of its five sectors for 30 years on average, according to its website. It has made at least 50 and, in most cases, more than 80 investments in each.

Since 1984, Advent has deployed $61 billion to 390 companies, according to its website. Among recent deals is the $14 billion-plus acquisition of cybersecurity giant McAfee, completed this month. Advent co-led a consortium that included Permira, Crosspoint Capital Partners, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, GIC and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

Advent International GPE IX was showing outsized performance as of September 2021, a Minnesota State Board of Investment report said, with a 3x net multiple and a 129.4 percent net IRR. Fund VIII was earning a 2.3x net multiple and a 26.9 percent net IRR.

Advent did not respond to a request for comment on this story.