Transitions: Soule Named Abbott Manager, Fund Nears Close –

After a little over seven years with Abbott Capital Management LLC, a private equity manager specializing in venture capital, buyouts and special situation funds for institutional investors, Edgar Soule this month was named managing director. He will continue his role as head of marketing and client service.

Soule is now one of Abbott Capital’s seven managers.

Abbott Capital, with offices in New York and Boston, manages over $4 billion, primarily funds-of-funds. “My job is to go out there and work on bringing in new business when we’re raising money and to work with existing clients,” Soule said.

Although Soule is the only person heading up the marketing efforts, he said that Abbott Capital works as a team. “As managing director, I just look at myself as being one of seven people,” Soule said.”One of the things that Abbott prides itself on is really being a family. We all get involved in aspects of the business.”

Fun with Funds-of-Funds

In the time that Soule has been at Abbott, the firm has raised three successively larger funds-of-funds. Its first, Abbott Private Equity Fund LP, closed with less than $50 million in July 1996. The second fund, launched in August of 1997 at the request of prior investors, exceeded its $200 million target, closing on a total of $248 million (BUYOUTS, July 7 1997, p. 4). Abbott Private Equity Fund III LP, targeted at $300 million, has already had two closes totaling $230 million with another $30 million upcoming. Soule said the next closing is set for the end of April and may be the last.

“I think we’ve had a very steady, controlled growth for the past couple of years,” Soule said, “We’ve really made an effort to look ahead several years to where we want to be. In terms of growth, we’re looking at this point to be adding a new fund-of-funds about every two years.”

Fund III will be similar to the first two in that there will be diversified investments, including commitments to venture capital and buyouts. The majority of the investments will be invested in the U.S. with the balance going abroad. Soule said investments will be made in the telecommunications, software and basic industrial sectors.

Soule would not discuss investors in this vehicle but did say that the fund has repeat investors including public and corporate pension funds, endowments, foundations, individuals and a hospital. Limited partners in Abbott’s first fund-of-funds include the College of Wooster, M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust, Polk Brothers and College of William & Mary.