PE funds globally raise nearly $600b in 2019

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Private equity funds globally raised $595 billion in 2019, less than what they raised in the preceding two years, according to a report from Preqin, an alternative assets data tracker.

However, the fundraising in 2019 was the third highest ever, only surpassed by 2017 and 2018, when PE funds generated $628 billion each. The number of funds that raised their targeted corpus from their investors, however, fell for the third straight year, from 2,398 in 2017 to 1,790 in 2018 and 1,316 in 2019, indicating that investors are only willing to back select funds and showing an increasing average ticket size of a fund.

Dealmaking was also strong, despite declining slightly from the previous year. The year 2019 saw $393 billion in buyout deals and $224 billion in venture capital deals announced, compared to $493 billion and $271 billion, respectively in 2018. “This was boosted in part by sky-high valuations, which saw the average buyout deal size hit a 10-year high of $490 million,” the report said. “It was another excellent year for the private equity industry. Fundraising and dealmaking activity both remain strong and investor sentiment is positive, with many institutions aiming to increase their private capital investments in the face of a potential downturn,” said Christopher Elvin, head of private equity, Preqin.

“However, it is not without its challenges. Intense competition for deals has pushed the average buyout investment to a size not seen since the global financial crisis and future returns may suffer as a result. However, overall, private equity remains sought after by investors and we are likely to see capital continue to flow into the asset class in 2020,” said Elvin. The impact of high valuations on future performance has weighed heavily on fund managers and many have been slowing the pace of their dealmaking as they make sure not to overpay for acquisitions, the report said. As a result, dry powder, or unutilized capital by funds, has continued to climb and hit a new high of $1.43 trillion as of the end of 2019.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.