Aisling, Clarus, Asia Alternatives lead late-decade venture portfolio at CalPERS

Funds from Aisling Capital, Clarus Ventures and Asia Alternatives lead a portfolio of late-decade venture funds at the California Public Employees’ Retirement System.

The portfolio of 2008 and 2009 vintages is a mix of mostly smaller and mid-sized funds. It employs primarily an early and multi-stage approach to investing, though it also has two funds of funds and a larger, more recent fund from Insight Venture Partners.

For instance, four of the funds are between $650 million and $900 million in size, and another four are $300 million or less. The Insight fund, Insight Venture Partners IX, is a generalist fund with $3.29 billion in capital.

Overall, the portfolio’s performance is unimpressive. Four of the funds had single digit IRRs as of March 2017 and another four were in the double digits, but only one topped 20 percent, according to a recent portfolio report. A number of the funds saw their performance decline from mid 2015, including two funds from Khosla Ventures.

The top-performing fund was 2008 Aisling Capital III with an IRR of 21.8 percent as of March, the report shows. The $650 million fund from 2008 backed a number of biotech companies that have since gone public, according to data from Thomson Reuters, including Agile Therapeutics, Chimerix, Sorrento Therapeutics and Syros Pharmaceuticals, among others.

In second place in the CalPERS portfolio was Clarus Lifesciences II, also from 2008, with an IRR of 18.3 percent.

On its heels was AACP India Venture Investors C from 2009 with an IRR of 18 percent, according to the report.

Also in the portfolio are funds from Aberdare Ventures and Essex Woodlands Health Ventures. The two Khosla funds are Khosla Ventures III and Khosla Ventures Seed, both from 2009.