SFERS approves $25m investment in Hillhouse Capital’s healthcare fund

A clerk counts Chinese yuan and U.S. dollar banknotes at a branch of Bank of China in Taiyuan

US pension fund San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System (SFERS) has approved a $25-million investment in the healthcare vehicle managed by Asia-focused private equity major Hillhouse Capital Group.

SFERS said the investment, approved unanimously by its Retirement Board, is classified as a venture capital investment within its private equity portfolio. About $15 million of the total investment closed on July 7, 2021.

Hillhouse Capital, founded by Chinese investor Zhang Lei in 2005, mainly focuses on Asia, covering healthcare, consumption, and corporate services sectors.

The big-name Chinese companies it has backed include Tencent Holdings, JD.Com, Alibaba Group Holding, Meituan, Didi Chuxing Technology, and Pinduoduo.

The firm was reported to be seeking to raise an aggregate of $12 billion for its buyout and growth vehicles and is following a separate fundraising strategy for both.

Chinese local media earlier reported that Hillhouse Capital started the USD-denominated vehicle’s fundraising in April 2020 targeting to raise $13 billion, with the buyout fund allocation at nearly $10 million.

The PE major closed the predecessor vehicle, USD-denominated Hillhouse Fund IV, at $10.6 billion in 2018 targeting investments across healthcare, consumer, technology, and services sectors globally, with a focus on Asia.

In February 2020, the firm launched a VC arm, GL Ventures, to raise its stakes in early-stage investments. Hillhouse and GL Ventures participated in at least 12 investments worth about $1.1 billion in March 2020, according to proprietary data compiled by DealStreetAsia.

It also partnered with New York-listed Chinese software firm Tuya Inc in April this year to set up a $400-million fund for investments in the global Internet of Things (IoT) industry.

Tuya, which provides an IoT cloud platform for smart devices, is expanding its investments in the IoT sector a month after it raised $915 million in an initial public offering (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

Meanwhile, SFERS disclosed that its portfolio edged out a gain of 0.42% in July 2021. Private credit returned 1.82% while Private equity, fixed income, and public equity were up modestly with returns of 0.65%, 0.49%, and 0.36%, respectively.

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.