Breaking Down Private Equity’s Recap Champs

From 2003 through last June, private equity firms have made tens of billions of dollars on dividend recapitalizations, in which a LBO shop tacks some more debt onto a portfolio company and, in most instances, takes a cut of capital off the top for itself immediately. Sometimes decried by journalists (but, too technical to explain for most politicians to attack), the dividend recap is a part of PE that could be subject to increased taxation as Washington legislators try to wrangle with the so-called “fiscal cliff.” Among large-cap LBO shops, Bain Capital by far has taken in the most on the dividend recap. peHUB has got five more PE firms that join them, in this week’s dividend recap champ slideshow, with a little help from Thomson Reuters data.

[slide title=”Bain Capital”]
Topping the leader board for a decade is Bain Capital. The Boston private equity firm did 12 dividend recaps totaling $11.89 billion, according to Thomson Reuters data.

[slide title=”TPG Capital “]
Well behind the dividend recap is TPG. The private equity firm did six dividend recaps, but hauled in a healthy $7.15 billion in the process.

[slide title=” Blackstone”]
Blackstone did just as many dividend recaps as TPG—however, the listed investment firm reaped $4.56 billion in the process.

[slide title=”Thomas H. Lee”]
Thomas H. Lee Partners has the fewest dividend recaps by number (just three) but still took $3.82 billion, according to Thomson Reuters data.

[slide title=”Apollo Investment Corp.”]
By number, Apollo Investment Corp. actually did the second-most dividend recaps over the last decade. Thomson Reuters data shows the firm brought home $3.76 billion in the process.

[slide title=”KKR”]
Listed private equity firm KKR did six dividend recaps, bringing in $3.33 billion, according to Thomson Reuters data.


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