Fund News In Brief

Alternative investment firm BlackRock is to acquire Swiss Re Private Equity Partners the European private equity and infrastructure fund of funds franchise of Swiss Re. Operating from Zurich, Hong Kong, New York and Bratislava, SRPEP had $7.5 billion in total commitments at May 31. SRPEP will be integrated with BlackRock’s existing private equity fund of funds group, BlackRock Private Equity Partners.

Blackstone Group has raised more than $12 billion for its latest real estate fund, its biggest yet, putting it within reach of its $13 billion fundraising target, Reuters reported. The fund, Blackstone Real Estate Partners VII, is the largest buyout fund by capital targeted globally, according to market research firm Preqin. It has proved to be one of the private equity firm’s most popular offerings with investors.

CapitaMalls Asia, the shopping malls arm of Singapore’s CapitaLand Ltd., said on Monday it has set up a $1 billion closed-end private equity fund that will invest in Chinese malls. Outside investors will take up half the capital in the CapitaMalls China Development Fund III, while a CapitaMalls unit will subscribe for the remaining 50 percent.

The Carlyle Group said its preliminary “carry fund” valuations fell 2 percent in the second quarter, underscoring the weak performance of the global markets, Reuters reported. Carry funds refer to those investment funds that Carlyle advises, including buyout funds, growth capital funds, real asset funds and distressed debt and mezzanine funds. The company said the portfolio excludes its structured credit funds and hedge funds.

The Carlyle Group said it closed a $510 million collateralized loan obligation fund, its third new-issue CLO in less than a year, Reuters reported. CLOs are structured investment products that are backed by risky, high-yield debt and are sold to investors as bonds.

Australian private equity firm Champ Ventures, which is affiliated with New York-based buyout shop Castle Harlan Inc., said it had raised A$475 million ($487 million) for its seventh and largest fund so far, above its target close of A$450 million, Reuters reported. Champ Ventures is part of Champ Group, which manages A$2 billion in funds.

HarbourVest Partners has agreed to buy the private equity portfolio held by Conversus Capital for $1.4 billion, or $22.11 per Conversus unit as of April 30. The deal is expected to hold an initial close during the fourth quarter with subsequent closings occurring throughout 2013. In February, Conversus announced a review of strategic alternatives, including a possible sale. Debevoise & Plimpton advised HarbourVest.

J. Lauritzen, a Danish shipping companies, has formed a 50/50 joint venture with Norwegian-based oil and gas focused private equity investor HitecVision. HitecVision manages four funds with a total committed capital of $3 billion and is headquartered in Stavanger with offices in Oslo and Houston.

Global investment firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts has closed its infrastructure and natural resource funds. The firm’s energy and infrastructure platform now manages $4 billion in non-private equity related assets.

Wheelock Street Capital has closed on $525 million in commitments for its first fund, Wheelock Street Real Estate Fund. Wheelock will invest in a broad range of real estate assets throughout the United States.