Fort Washington Relaunches 7th FOF With $400M Target

Fort Washington Capital Partners has re-launched its seventh fund of funds, which it originally initiated about a year ago. 

Although the firm got a $10 million pledge last fall from the City of Cincinnati Retirement System for Fort Washington Private Equity Investors VII LP, the pension cancelled that commitment this spring. Meeting minutes do not indicate why it was cancelled, and the pension did not respond to a question about it. A spokeswoman for Fort Washington Capital said the firm does not comment on funds while they are in the market.

In late August, Fort Washington Capital’s Peter Jarman, an investment manager, wrote to the Fresno County Employees’ Retirement Association stating, “Our firm is getting ready to raise its seventh core Private Equity Fund of Fund.” A regulatory filing from late June indicates that the target for Fort Washington Private Equity Investors VII LP is $400 million and that, as of that date, no commitments had been made.

The previous vehicle closed in May 2009 with about $170 million, and the firm’s fifth fund closed in 2006 with $135 million. Thompson Hine LLP is the firm’s legal adviser.

Fort Washington commits to funds as small as $200 million and as large as $6 billion but tends to favor smaller vehicles, writing checks of $5 million to $10 million per fund. The firm has previously committed to buyout shops ABRY Partners, The Carlyle Group, Fenway Partners, Flexpoint Ford and Great Hill Equity Partners; and to venture capital firms Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Shasta Ventures; as well as to distressed investor HIG Bayside.

Fort Washington Capital’s backers are a mix of public pensions, insurance companies, endowments and foundations. Insurance company Western & Southern, which is the firm’s parent, is the main investor in Fort Washington’s funds. Procter & Gamble Co. and Fifth Third Bancorp are also supporters.