Nashville shop raises $165M

Small and steady is proving a successful approach for GEN CAP America. The Nashville, Tenn.-based lower mid-market shop last month closed its latest fund at $165 million, completing the effort in roughly six months despite the downbeat capital-raising environment.

The firm raised $101 million for its fifth fund, which closed in 2005.

The majority of the investors in Southvest Fund VI are re-ups from prior GEN CAP America funds, although the pool did draw interest from new limited partners, according to Don Napier, executive vice president at the firm.

The recession hasn’t had a heavy impact on the firm, Napier said.

“To date, our portfolio is holding up extremely well, and deal flow is good,” he said. “We’re seeing opportunities with owner-operators who are nervous about the economy and looking to cash out, and in corporate carve-outs, where the parent company needs liquidity.”

The firm invests in companies with annual revenue of between $5 million and $100 million with a history of strong cash flow. GEN CAP America targets the manufacturing, distribution and basic services sectors.

The firm’s portfolio includes Advantage Nursing Services, a New Orleans-based nurse staffing company; AmBath/ReBath, a Phoenix-based maker of bathtub liners and related products; Belt Power, a Smyrna, Ga.-based maker of conveyor belts; Calling All Ships, a Miami distributor of health and beauty products; and Van Pool Transportation, a Wilbraham, Mass.-based provider of transportation services for children with special needs. —Michael Baron