PE fund briefs, week of July 27, 2009

Navis Asia fund halfway to target

Navis Capital Partners, a Kuala Lumpur-based buyout fund, has closed on about half of the commitments it seeks for its sixth buyout fund, according to a source familiar with the situation.

The firm seeks to raise between $1 billion to $1.25 billion for Navis Asia Fund VI. The firm raised $1 billion for Navis Asia Fund V, which closed in 2007.

Campbell Lutyens & Co. is serving as Navis Capital’s placement agent on the fund.

Navis Capital originally sought to raise $1.75 billion, but pulled back on its target earlier this year, according to a report. Fund-raising on the vehicle kicked off in 2008, and the firm has accumulated between $400 million and $550 million in commitments to date, the source said.

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System has committed $130 million to Navis Capital’s fourth and fifth funds. As of the pension system’s September 2008 report, Navis Capital’s fully drawn fourth fund had an IRR of 22.79 percent. CalSTRS’ $100 million commitment to Navis Capital’s fifth fund was halfway called down.

The firm was founded in 1998 and touts that it has “the largest private equity professional team in Asia,” with 54 professionals in six offices across the region. —Erin Griffith

Advent raising fifth Latin American fund

Advent International has begun marketing its fifth fund to invest in Latin American companies. The fund, Advent Latin America Private Equity Fund V, has closed on $70 million to date, according to a regulatory filing. The target was undisclosed.

Advent International raised $1.3 billion for its prior Latin America fund, which closed in 2007, and which topped its target by 30 percent. It also was the largest private equity fund ever raised for investment in Latin America, the company said at the time.

The fund-raising process may take longer this time around. On top of the difficult fund-raising environment, a first half report for 2009 shows M&A in Latin America has taken a hit comparable to the developed markets. Deal volume was down by 36% compared with the first half of last year with a 45% drop in value, according to news service “Mergermarket.” However, the report shows a glimpse of recovery for M&A in Latin America: Second quarter numbers saw an 82% jump in deal value from the first quarter, while volume remained steady.

Advent International has been hard at work investing its fourth fund in Mexican, Brazilian and Argentinean companies, as it has signed at least eight deals since closing the fund in July 2007.

The firm did not respond to a request for comment. —Erin Griffith

Macquarie seeks $500M for India Fund

An infrastructure fund run by the Macquarie group and the State Bank of India plans to raise $500 million in India to take the size of the fund to nearly $1.5 billion, two sources familiar with the deal said.

The fund has raised $887 million from foreign investors and aims to get commitments from Indian investors by September, said the sources, who declined to be named. State Bank has committed $150 million to the domestic leg of the fund-raising, they said.

State Bank of India officials declined comment.

India has said it needs $500 billion in the next five years to overhaul its infrastructure and the transport minister has said the country plans to spend $20 billion a year to build roads.

State Bank and Macquarie said in a joint statement in April that the fund would focus on traditional infrastructure assets that generate long-term cash flows, such as transport infrastructure, telecoms, power and logistics projects. —Reuters