Tide Floats Edgewater To $21 Million First Close –

Cleveland-based The Edgewater Group last month held a first closing that landed $21 million for the firm’s buyout pledge fund.

Edgewater Capital, L.P., the firm’s first fund-raising effort, will invest in small to middle-market domestic companies with maximum enterprise values of $50 million. Since being formed in 1982, Edgewater has operated as a private equity “boutique,” forming and executing investment ideas with operating partners, then syndicating the financing for the transactions, said Darrell Austin, an Edgewater principal.

“As prices have increased, we have been spending more time syndicating the equity,” Mr. Austin said. “That caused us to miss opportunities, so we decided to put a fund together.”

Limited partners in the fund, which has a $40 million target, include G.E. Capital Equity Capital Group and NationsBank Capital Investors, as well as a large insurance company that is active in mezzanine investing and several private individuals. Edgewater intends to hold a final close by the end of the first quarter.

Continental Equities of Columbus, Ohio, is acting as placement agent for the fund, which was launched in late 1997 (BUYOUTS June 1, 1998, p. 13).

The fund’s board of advisers includes Charles Ames, senior operating partner at Clayton, Dubilier & Rice; Richard Boyer, president of Stoneville Furniture; Donald DeFosset, president of Navistar International’s truck group; Richard Ferrari, former president of the Davidson division of Textron Corp.; and Michael Shaughnessy, president of ColorMatrix Corp.