AUA Private Equity Seeks June First Close for $200 Million Debut Fund

AUA Private Equity, which is officially out fundraising for its debut pool, hopes to hit a $70 million to $100 million first close in June, sources say

New York-based AUA is seeking $200 million for its first fund, persons say. The pool is generating enough interest for $400 million to $450 million, but AUA will likely close the fund once it reaches $250 million, the source says.

AUA is pitching attractive coinvestment terms. For LPs that take part in the first close, AUA is offering free fee and carry on any coinvestments, the source says. AUA’s GP commitment is also 8% to 10%, the person says. This is up significantly from the typical 2% commitment from GPs.

The strong commitment from AUA is a “good thing,” one placement agent says. “Especially with a first time fund, a big GP commit can make a difference in getting momentum,” the placement source says.

AUA Partners is led by Andy Unanue, who is part of the family that founded Goya Foods. At Goya, Unanue was COO from 1999 to 2004. He is managing partner of AUA, which was formed in early 2012. The PE firm focuses on consumer, media and business services and typically invests from $10 million to $30 million equity per deal.

The fund is expected to make investments in Hispanic-oriented and family-owned businesses in the U.S. AUA recently recapped Associated Foods Holdings, a specialty distributor of branded independent retail supermarkets in New York City, in a deal valued at $160 million. Associated is a family-owned business that serves the Hispanic community. (Most of Associated’s store owners are also Hispanic, I’m told.) However, the family that runs Associated is not Latino.

AUA declined comment.