Kirkland Represents Bregal On $500M Private Equity Fund

by Jake Simpson, LAW360

New York-based corporate investment firm Bregal Investments has launched a new $500 million growth-oriented private equity fund headed by a former private equity head for Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Bregal said Wednesday.

Bregal Investments, which is based in New York and has offices in London, said it has closed the Bregal Sagemount I LP fund with committed capital reserve of roughly $500 million. The fund will be growth-oriented investment of between $15 million and $75 million, the firm said. In certain cases, Bregal Investments may match the contribution, allowing the new fund to invest up to $150 million in a single company.

The fund is headed up by Gene Yoon, former head of private equity for Goldman Sachs’ America Special Situations Group. Yoon had been at Goldman Sachs since 2007 and was previously a partner with Boston-based private equity firm Great Hill Partners LLC.

Yoon said running a fund of his own was an evolutionary career move after being a general partner at Great Hill and starting up a fund within Goldman Sachs’ titanic financial platform.

“If you look at my career progression, it’s sort of the next natural step,” Yoon said.

According to Yoon, the Bregal Sagemount fund will invest in between 10 and 15 companies in the business services, software and technology-enabled businesses, information and media, financial services and health care sectors. The fund will make “a healthy mix” of control and noncontrol investments, he said.

The fund will look to invest in firms with a high percentage of recurring revenue. Although Bregal Sagemount will make mostly equity investments, it may invest in a company’s junior debt if the right opportunity comes along, Yoon said.

“If we see a great company where junior debt is the only way to get great exposure, we’re not opposed to doing that,” he said.

Yoon is joined by fellow Bregal Sagemount partners Phillip Yates and Daniel Kim. Yates was a former colleague of Yoon’s at Great Hill who resigned his principal position there in February, while Kim worked with Yoon at Goldman Sachs.

The vast majority of the capital was provided by Bregal Investments, Yoon said. He and the other partners provided the remainder of the funds.

Yoon said that having one large institutional partner instead of a group of institutional investors could give the fund a competitive advantage.

“A lot of funds are being forced by their investors to focus myopically on one sector of the market,” he said. “Our flexibility allows us to fill in some of gaps created by highly specialized fund work.”

The fund has yet to make its first investment. Yoon said that the fund would begin to invest in companies sometime in the next two months and has several potential investments in the pipeline.

“Backing another world-class manager with a differentiated approach is another logical step in expanding our global private equity platform,” Bregal Investments Co-Chairman Louis Brenninkmeijer said in a statement. “We are confident their experience and previous success will serve us and the companies they invest in well.”

Bregal Investments is the corporate investment business of Swiss-based family holding company Cofra Holding AG. The firm invests directly in equity capital in public and private situations and private equity funds, according to its website.

The company has received more than $9 billion in capital commitments since it was founded in 2002.

Bregal Investments is advised by Kirkland & Ellis LLP. Private equity partner John R. O’Neil led the Kirkland team.

– Editing by Richard McVay.

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