Firm: Greenbriar Equity Group LLC
Fund: Greenbriar Equity Fund III
Target Range: $1 billion to $1.25 billion
Amount Raised: $1.1 billion
Placement Agent: Park Hill
Legal Counsel: Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
With a team that includes ex-UAL Corp CEO Gerald Greenwald, now co-founder and managing partner at Greenbriar, the firm raised about 80 percent of its target within a few months by its first closing in early 2013 for Greenbriar Equity Fund III.
The firm then turned most of its attention to dealmaking as it finished up the fund, which is now about 25 percent invested in two deals: In May 2013, Greenbriar paid an undisclosed sum to buy Transplace Holdings LLC, a provider of non-asset based third-party logistics, intermodal and truck brokerage services, from CI Capital Partners; also Nordco, which is North America’s largest supplier of new, rebuilt and used maintenance-of-way equipment and rail-related products and services.
“It was the longest of three fundraises we’ve done. We’re glad to get it behind us,” Regg Jones, managing partner and co-founder, told Buyouts. “It’s a more challenging fundraising environment today. We are a more of a niche fund. We’re not on everyone’s radar, but the people who know us really like what we do.”
Jones said most of the limited partners from its vintage 2007, $1 billion Fund II returned: foundations, university endowments, family offices, insurance companies, pension plans and other institutional investors.
Terms with LPs saw modest changes, with a modification to share a greater proportion of transaction fees with investors in response to increased sensitivity around that issue in the industry, Jones said.
All the firm’s leaders and other senior executives remained in place, but Greenbriar has increased its team of advisers from the ranks of retired Fortune 500 executives to about 40 or 45, up from a couple dozen five years ago.
Greenbriar also created an executive council to formalize its relationship with retired CEOs. Council members include Norm Augustine, Lockheed Martin’s former chairman and CEO; Mike Eskew, former chairman and CEO of UPS; Sir John Rose, former chief executive and executive director of Rolls-Royce Plc, as well as Tim Solso, ex-CEO of Cummins Inc and current chairman of General Motors.