After writing for months about the fundraising famine, I feel like I’m in bizarro world this week. First Marlin Equity closes its fund at $200 million over its target (after turning away another $350 million). And now Atlas Holdings has increased the target on its first institutional fund because of heavy demand, according to a source familiar with the situation.
The Greenwich, Conn.-based firm decided to increase its target from $300 million to $350 million. The firm has received a strong response from investors in both the U.S. and Europe, a source familiar with the situation said. Atlas is planning a first close next week on north o $100 million in capital commitments, the source said. peHUB first reported the firm’s fundraising effort in October, noting that Capstone Partners is acting as the firm’s placement agent.
I’m going to chalk this streak of good fundraising news up to coincidence-as we saw in Preqin’s latest report, it’s still pretty rough out there. And actually, that I’m this excited about a whopping two blockbuster funds is frightening.
Before it launched fundraising in July, Atlas Holdings relied on investors to back deals on a one-by-one basis, typically investing large chunks of its own general partners’ capital. That structure is similar to that of its founders’ prior firm, Pegasus Capital. Atlas Holdings’ general partners intend to make an “abnormally large” capital contribution to the fund.
Atlas Holdings invests in lower middle market distressed companies through a distressed debt-for-control, or “loan-to-own” strategy. The firm targets investments in the industrial, chemical, agribusiness and financial services industries. The company purchased the Trus Joint Commercial division of Weyerhaeuser in August for an undisclosed amount. In May the firm teamed up with Blue Wolf Capital Management to purchase the Pictou, Nova Scotia, pulp mill, and associated timberlands business, to from Neenah Paper Inc.