Fort Washington Hits Market With 7th F-O-F

Cincinnati-based Fort Washington Capital Partners has launched its seventh fund of funds just about six months after closing its previous effort.

It’s not clear what the target is for the new fund, but the previous one closed in May with about $170 million, and the firm’s fifth fund closed in 2006 with $135 million. The Cincinnati Retirement System recently pledged $10 million to Fort Washington Private Equity Investors VII LP. Thompson Hine LLP is the firm’s legal adviser.

The firm is particularly interested in vehicles that can take advantage of distress in the market, such as turnarounds, restructurings and secondaries, Christopher Baucom, managing director, private equity, for Fort Washington, told Buyouts in August.

Fort Washington commits to funds as small as $200 million and as large as $6 billion but tends to favor smaller vehicles, writing checks of $5 million to $10 million per fund. The firm has previously committed to buyout shops ABRY Partners, The Carlyle Group, Fenway Partners, Flexpoint Ford and Great Hill Equity Partners; and to venture capital firms Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Shasta Ventures; as well as to distressed investor HIG Bayside.

Fort Washington Capital’s backers are a mix of public pensions, insurance companies, endowments and foundations. Insurance company Western & Southern, which is the firm’s parent, is the main investor in Fort Washington’s funds. Procter & Gamble Co. and Fifth Third Bancorp are also supporters.

Fort Washington Capital manages or advises about a dozen private equity funds of funds and six customized programs, including ones for the states of Kentucky, New Mexico, Ohio and Utah. In 2008, it purchased the fund-of-funds business of Cleveland-based Peppertree Partners.