Castlelake tops $500 mln for first independent fund

Firm: Castlelake LP

Fund: Castlelake III LP

Amount Raised: $500.25 million

Placement Agent: Denning and Co LLC

The Minneapolis firm, which was known until August as TPG Credit Management LP, said in the mid-December filing that it has raised $500.2 million for Castlelake III LP, drawing commitments from 28 investors in 17 states. The filing did not indicate the target for the new fund.

Castlelake raised $996.76 million in 2011 for the predecessor fund, TPG Credit Strategies Fund II LP, above its $800 million target, according to the Thomson One private equity database. The firm’s inaugural credit strategies fund raised $464.5 million in 2007 against a $500 million target, according to Thomson One.

A spokeswoman for the firm declined to comment.

Castlelake focuses on distressed debt in the lower mid-market, typically investing $10 million to $50 million to buy troubled loans from banks in North America and Europe. The firm also invests in aviation finance, in mid-market special situations and in dislocated industries where fundamental assumptions have changed, resulting in impaired assets, according to the firm’s website. Current areas of focus include shipping, ethanol, and oil and gas.

The predecessor name notwithstanding, Castlelake, which was founded in 2005, always had an arms-length relationship with TPG Capital, which has main offices in Fort Worth, Texas, and San Francisco. Rory O’Neill, the managing partner and CEO of Castlelake, told Buyouts in September that the firm changed its name in August to reduce marketplace confusion. The two firms continue to have a relationship, he said.

Limited partners in Castlelake  funds have included the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System, according to Thomson One.

Denning and Co LLC is acting as placement agent for Fund III.