Firms & Funds

Black Opal Equity has launched as a Jersey City, N.J.-based private equity firm focused on U.S. middle-market businesses in the infrastructure, essential service and government sectors. Managing partner Matthew Day previously focused on infrastructure and essential services investments with Macquarie.

Blackstone Group (NYSE: BX) posted quarterly “economic net income” of $278.4 million, compared to a $509.3 million loss in Q3 2008.

BNY Mellon Asset Management has acquired a 20 percent stake in Siguler Guff & Company, a multi-strategy private equity firm with over $8 billion in assets under management. No financial terms were disclosed.

Celtic Therapeutics, a private equity firm formed to acquire and invest in a diversified portfolio of 10 to 15 novel therapeutic product candidates, has received a $100 million investment commitment from PPD Inc. (Nasdaq: PPDI).

CVC Capital Partners has not yet held a close on its debut infrastructure fund, which it launched more than a year ago with a $2 billion target.

Fifth Third Bancorp (Nasdaq: FITB) has formed a private equity lending team, which will focus on transactions in which the target has between $10 million and $50 million in EBITDA. It will be led by managing directors Brian Crabb, formerly with CapitalSource, and Josh VanManen, former head of Fifth Third’s western region team in Denver.

Fortress Investment Group may aggregate $650 million in commercial loans into the first new commercial mortgage-backed security eligible for a federal lending program, according to Commercial Mortgage Alert.

Fortress Investment Group (NYSE: FIG) posted a $0.43 per share loss in Q3, compared to a $0.66 per share loss in Q3 2008.

Growthworks has agreed to merge with Seamark Asset Management (TSX: SM), in order to form a mid-sized, diversified asset management company in Canada. It will be called Matrix Asset Management, and led by current Growthworks president and CEO David Levi.

Greenhill & Co. has agreed to sell its merchant banking business to the unit’s senior management, in order to focus on its advisory business. Greenhill will retain its fund placement unit.

Greylock Partners has closed its thirteenth fund with $575 million in capital commitments. It also has hired Reid Hoffman, co-founder of Greylock portfolio company LinkedIn, as a partner.

Kohlberg Capital Corp. (Nasdaq: KCAP) said the filing of its Q3 results would be delayed after its Deloitte & Touche LLP raised questions about the process of valuing certain loan portfolio investments.

Lime Rock, an energy-focused private equity firm, has closed its second Lime Rock Resources fund with $410 million in capital commitments. It will seek to acquire, directly operate and improve lower-risk oil and gas properties in the United States.

Lone Star Funds has agreed to cut the fees on some of its funds, according to The Wall Street Journal.

PAI Partners has formally offered to cut the size of its €5.4 billion buyout fund by half, with LP responses due by Dec. 3.

Portfolio Advisors LLC has closed its debut secondaries fund with $1.1 billion in capital commitments, according to VentureWire. The Darien, Conn.-based firm has invested in secondaries via its fund-of-funds vehicles, but this is its first dedicated secondaries vehicle.

SJ Berwin has opened an office in Shanghai. This is the law firm’s 12th office overall, and second in East Asia.

Sumitomo Trust and Banking Co. (Tokyo: 8403) and Chuo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. (Tokyo: 8309) said they plan to merge, creating Japan’s largest trust bank.

The City of London’s pension scheme is considering plans to take more control of investment decisions, including a possible increase to its alternative investment allocation.

The Teachers’ Retirement System of Oklahoma has hired Franklin Park to manage a $400 million discretionary private equity account. Franklin Park replaces Aldus Equity, which was fired after its founder Saul Meyer was indicted as part of the New York pay-to-play investigation. Myer has since pled guilty.

Tennenbaum Capital Partners has secured over $330 million in capital commitments for its first fund focused on debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing.

Tiger Infrastructure Partners has launched as a new infrastructure private equity firm, with a focus on mid-market opportunities in North America and in Europe. It will be led by Emil Henry, former Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury who most recently ran Lehman Brothers’ infrastructure private equity business.

WAMEX Private Equity Management has held a $55 million first close for its second fund, which will focus on mid-market opportunities in Mexico.

WestView Capital Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm focused on growth equity opportunities the middle markets, has closed its second fund with $325 million in capital commitments. Probitas Partners served as placement agent.