So says Michael Sala, vice president of sales for iLevel. The company provides a reporting and research tool used by fund managers that combines email, spreadsheets and other sources of data. The technology traces its origins to The Blackstone Group’s 2006 launch of its portfolio management platform for internal use.
The platform arose from a need to produce clear, consistent and timely reporting of company-level performance. Demand from regulators and insitutional investors for transparent reporting intensified in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.
Blackstone spun out iLevel in 2010 as an independent entity that signed early adopters and brought on additional investors to fund its early growth. The Carlyle Group, Duff & Phelps and Hamilton Lane signed on as investors over the next two years, as iLevel expanded its offerings to all constituents of the private capital industry.
Today, iLevel counts about 90 clients, including eight of the top 15 largest private equity firms, and GPs from buyout, energy, infrastructure, distressed, mezzanine, venture, growth equity, real estate and credit funds. Co-investors, funds of funds, fund administrators, valuation service providers, banks and institutional investors also use iLevel to assess portfolios.
Sala said he has seen more than 3x growth in private capital firms interested in iLevel this year.
“Firms want control of asset performance data to explain returns and distinguish themselves during a fundraise,” he said in an email to Buyouts. “iLevel’s genesis within Blackstone and investments from industry leaders uniquely positions us to understand how firms use portfolio data as a differentiator. iLevel knows what the buy side needs because we were built from within the buy side.”