Fundraising Isn’t Totally Dead: Oversubscribed Huntsman Gay Fund Approaches Close

Huntsman Gay Capital Partners has hit the hard cap for its debut fund, but it isn’t stopping there, according to a source familiar with the situation. The firm, formed by industrialist Jon Huntsman and former Bain Capital investor Bob Gay, had a $1.25 billion ceiling, according to a regulatory filing.

Thanks to anchor commitments from limited partners like like CalPERS, CalSTRS, AlpInvest, C.V. Starr & Co., and GIC (Massachusetts Group Insurance Commission), the firm has hit that $1.25 figure, our source said. But instead of holding a final close, H&G has extended its fund’s closing to accommodate a commitment from New York State Common Retirement Fund and possibly one or two other LPs. The fund is expected to wrap up by the end of this year or in the early days of 2009.

“The fund will for sure be oversubscribed,” the source said, crediting the popularity in dire fundraising times to the prior success of Huntsman and Gay.

CalSTRS committed $100 million, while CalPERS committed $180 million, according to public documents.

Palo Alto-based H&G Capital’s roster includes the likes of former 49ers quarterback Steve Young, former Key Venture Partners MD David Dame, former Bain MD Gregory Benson and Ron Mika of Sorenson Capital.

The firm was sued by H.I.G Capital for trademark infringement (similar names) in April, a lawsuit that appears to have gone nowhere, since I see H&G hasn’t filed anything with a different name. (It didn’t work when H.I.G. sued HgCapital in Europe, either.)

H&G signed its first deal in October, purchasing Turner Bros. Holdings, an energy transport company, from Saw Mill Capital. The firm did not return calls for comment.