Whitehorse continues quick ramp up, raises $2 bln for third fund

Whitehorse Liquidity Partners has wrapped up a third secondaries fund at its hard cap, securing $2 billion.

The Toronto-based private equity firm closed Whitehorse Liquidity Partners Fund III 33 percent above its original target of $1.5 billion. The fund is double the size of its predecessor, which raised $1 billion last year.

Fund III was backed by a range of limited partners, including family offices, financial institutions, insurers, pension plans and wealthy individuals. Disclosed investors included Minnesota State Board of Investment, which committed $100 million, and New York State Common Retirement Fund, which committed $200 million.

Whitehorse was founded in 2015 by Managing Partner Yann Robard, who previously led the secondaries and co-investments program of Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. Before CPPIB, he served with Paul Capital’s secondary fund and JP Morgan’s credit operations.

Robard set up Whitehorse to make preferred equity investments in PE portfolios. After a record $79.7 billion set in 2018, secondary market volume of completed transactions globally reached $46 billion in the first half of 2019, up 25.4 percent year over year, according to a recent survey.

Market conditions perhaps explain the rollout of a third and much larger Whitehorse vehicle roughly a year after completing Fund II. In all, the firm has raised $3.4 billion over three funds since 2017.

Robard’s senior team includes Partner Rob Gavin, who joined Whitehorse in 2016 from Denham Capital Management; Partner Michael Gubbels, who came on board in 2015 from Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and OMERS Private Equity; CFO and Partner Sean Connor, recruited in 2016 from BridgePoint Financial Group; and Partner Giorgio Riva, who joined in 2017 from CPPIB.

Whitehorse reports executing on 39 pending or closed transactions representing $3.2 billion since inception. Earlier this year, it led a strip sale of investments out of Carlyle Group’s debut U.S. Equity Opportunities Fund, Buyouts reported in September. The deal’s value was about $250 million, according to sources.

Action Item: Learn more about Whitehorse Liquidity Partners here.