PE fund briefs, week of March 3, 2008

Firm plots third financial services fund

Lovell Minnick Partners, which buys and invests growth capital in small financial services companies, is prepping its third fund, says a source familiar with the firm’s planning.

The El Segundo, Calif.-based shop, which will likely target $350 million, has hired Credit Suisse as placement agent.

The firm typically invests $10 million to $40 million of equity in financial services companies, and then hold onto the investments for about five years before seeking liquidity. Its previous fund, Lovell Minnick Equity Partners II, closed in July 2006 with $220 million in commitments. CEO Jeff Lovell, who founded the firm with James Minnick in 1999, declined to comment on fund-raising.

Lovell Minnick participated in one deal in 2007, according to its website, when it invested a $35 million minority investment in Leerink Swann & Co., a Boston-based boutique investment bank. The year before, it made two investments and scored one exit. The firm’s website does not discuss terms, but according to market research firm CapitalIQ, the firm made a $10 million investment in ClariVest Asset Management; a $10 million investment in PlanMember Financial Corp.; and sold AssetMark Investment Services, a company in which it invested $12 million in 2000, to Genworth Financial for $330 million in cash.

One potential investor, who was scheduled to meet with partners from the firm late last month, said the firm enjoys a good reputation and has earned good returns, though he did not have specific returns. He adds that the firm is poised to benefit from a trend in which many banks, battered by subprime mortgage-related write-downs, look to divest assets.

“I think it’s a good time to look at private equity firms focused in financial services,” he says. —Bernard VaughanMainsail sets forth on fund II

Mainsail Partners has raised $110 million for its second fund, according to a regulatory filing. The San Francisco-based firm focuses on growth equity, recap and management buyout opportunities. Its debut fund closed in 2005 with about $30 million in commitments.

Riverside banks on $900M

The Riverside Co. is targeting $900 million for its latest buyout fund, according to Private Equity Insider. It also has raised its fee structure from a 2% management fee and 20% carry to a 2.5% management fee and a 25% carry.

Superior raises $60M

Detroit-based firm Superior Capital Partners has raised $60 million toward its debut buyouts fund that is targeted at $75 million, according to a regulatory filing. The filing lists William Y. Campbell as a fund manager and indicates the money has been drawn from 18 investors. The fund will collect management fees of 2.5% each year for the first $50 million under management and 2% for funds over $50 million, according to the filing.

Tribes form fund

First Nations Capital Partners has been formed as a $25 million private equity fund by Wells Fargo Community Development Corp., the Colusa Indian Tribe and the Rincon Indian Tribe. It is the first U.S. private equity fund with tribal governments as its primary investors, owners and managers. The two tribes are located near Sacramento, Calif., and each has committed to invest up to $5 million in the fund over five years. Other Indian tribes and Nations are expected to commit from $1 million to $5 million each, while four to six individual investors are joining the tribes with a maximum investment of $250,000 each.

Water Street aims for $600M

Water Street Healthcare Partners is gearing up to raise its second fund with a $600 million target, according to LBO Wire. The Chicago-based firm closed its debut fund with $400 million in 2006, and focuses on mid-market health care companies. Limited partners include Goldman Sachs, Adams Street Partners, Allianz Group and PPM America.