Oversubscribed Huntsman Gay fund nears close

Huntsman Gay Capital Partners has hit the hard cap for its debut fund, but it isn’t stopping there, according to a source familiar with the situation.

The firm, formed by industrialist Jon Huntsman and former Bain Capital investor Bob Gay, had a $1.25 billion ceiling, according to a regulatory filing.

The firm did not return calls for comment.

Thanks to anchor commitments from limited partners California Public Employees’ Retirement System, California State Teachers’ Retirement System, AlpInvest, C.V. Starr & Co. and GIC, the firm has already hit that $1.25 figure, says the source. CalSTRS committed $100 million, while CalPERS committed $180 million, according to public documents.

But instead of holding a final close, H&G has extended its fund’s closing to accommodate a commitment from New York State Common Retirement Fund and possibly one or two other LPs. The fund is expected to wrap up by the end of this year or in the early days of 2009.

“The fund will for sure be oversubscribed,” says the source, crediting the popularity in dire fund-raising times to the prior success of Huntsman and Gay.

Palo Alto, Calif.-based Huntsman Gay Capital’s roster includes the likes of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Steve Young, former Key Venture Partners Managing Director David Dame, former Bain Managing Director Gregory Benson and Ron Mika of Sorenson Capital.

Huntsman Gay, which was sued by H.I.G Capital for trademark infringement over the similar-sounding names in April, has not filed anything with a different name.

Huntsman Gay signed its first deal in October, purchasing Turner Bros. Holdings, an energy transport company, from Saw Mill Capital. —Erin Griffith