Job of the Week: Secondaries Opportunity with an Asian Twist

Looking for an exciting opportunity in the private equity secondaries market based in a top fund manager’s Chicago office with the opportunity to relocate to Asia after two years?

Look no further than this week’s job posting from global fund manager Adams Street Partners which is advertising for a senior associate to join its secondary investment team in sourcing, analyzing, and monitoring investment opportunities, principally those involving Asian assets. Adams Street is witnessing an increase in its Asian deal flow and is looking for a professional who can focus on those investments, fully integrate into the team over approximately two years in the Chicago office, and then relocate permanently to Asia (either the Beijing or Singapore office). The team currently consists of 11 people across three offices and manages over $3.8 billion of capital dedicated to secondary investing.

Adams Street Partners isn’t the only fund manager firm that’s in hiring mode for a secondaries-focused candidate to concentrate on Asian opportunities. Global private equity fund manager HarbourVest is also advertising an opening on its website for a secondary associate based in Boston and also for an investment associate/senior associate for its secondary team based in Hong Kong.

A boost in deal flow is predicted in the secondaries market in the next 24 months. According to Preqin’s June private equity report, 25% of banks and investment banks and 17% of insurance companies are likely to dispose of private equity fund interests on the secondary market in the next two years, which is above the average of 16% of all limited partners surveyed that intend to sell interests in the next 24 months.

Geographically, the majority of likely sellers of fund interests on the secondary market over this period are European (51%) says Preqin. North America-based investors constitute 38% of potential sellers, while Asia and rest of world constitute 11%. The need to sell is reported by Preqin to be even greater among European financial institutions, with 66% of banks and investment banks and 56% of insurance companies looking to sell located in this region. Just 11% of banks and investment banks potentially looking to sell in the next 24 months are from North America. In addition to regulatory pressures, says Preqin this trend may also be reflective of a reaction to the European economic crisis by European banks and investment banks.

Preqin cites three European institutions that have assets on the sales block. These include Austria’s UniCredit Bank which as of May 2012 in the process of auctioning off some of its private equity fund investments in order to reduce its exposure to the asset class in light of current regulations. Its portfolio primarily consists of private equity funds investing in Central and Eastern Europe.

As of June 2012, Swedish insurance company Länsförsäkringar was in the final stages of finding buyers for a portfolio containing around 36 private equity fund interests, worth up to €1.5 billion. The insurance company has a long history of committing to buyout funds in Europe and North America.

Finally, as of Q2 2012, Preqin reported Swiss Banque Baring Brothers Sturdza planned to decrease its private equity allocation over the next three to five years and would consider selling additional private equity fund stakes on the secondary market in order to do so. It does not have any specific funds it is looking to exit and it will consider selling across the board. Its portfolio is known to include early stage funds investing in Asia, according to Preqin.

If you are interested in getting stuck into the flourishing secondaries market, scroll down to find out more about applying for this weeks’ vacancy.

***Job of the Week***

Position: Senior Associate, Secondary Investment Team

Firm: Adams Street Partners

Firm Description: Adams Street Partners is a global investment firm managing over $22 billion in private equity assets globally across both partnership (primary and secondary) and direct investing strategies. The firm has 112 employees worldwide, with offices in Chicago, London, Menlo Park, Singapore, and Beijing.
Adams Street Partners has been investing in private equity partnerships since 1979, managing direct investments in private equity since 1972, and active in the secondary market since 1986.
To date, the Adams Street Partners secondary investment team has closed on over 100 transactions, ranging from acquisitions of traditional limited partnership interests from other private equity fund investors to more complex, structured acquisitions of portfolios of direct company interests from corporate venture programs. Like those made by Adams Street Partners’ primary fund-of-funds program, the secondary team’s investments span a full array of subclasses, including venture capital, buyout, mezzanine/subordinated debt, restructuring/distressed debt, and special situation funds across all industries and in both developed and emerging markets.

Location: Chicago (relocation to Asia after two years)

Job Description (as cited via Adams Street Partners website):
The successful candidate will be responsible for supporting the activities of the secondary investment team in sourcing, analyzing, and monitoring investment opportunities, principally those involving Asian assets. Adams Street Partners is seeing an increase in its Asian deal flow and is looking for someone who can focus on those investments, fully integrate into the team over approximately two years in the Chicago office, and then relocate permanently to Asia (either the Beijing or Singapore office). The team currently consists of 11 people across three offices and manages over $3.8 billion of capital dedicated to secondary investing. The successful candidate will report to: Jason Gull, partner & global head of secondary investments

Key Responsibilities (as cited via Adams Street Partners website):

• Performing quantitative analysis, including company, fund, and transaction modelling
• Conducting market and company research
• Participating in due diligence calls with sellers and GPs
• Assisting in all aspects of the transaction, including deal selection, pricing analysis, negotiation, and execution
• Assisting in all transaction documentation
• Conducting secondary market research
• Developing and maintaining proprietary deal and market intelligence
• Performing deal monitoring analysis
• Participating in identification of deal sourcing targets
• Performing other ad hoc projects, which may reflect the needs of the broader partnership investment team and presentations to investment committees

Ideal Candidate Profile (as cited via Adams Street Partners website):
An individual who is self-disciplined, demonstrates creative thinking, and has the following characteristics:
• Graduated from a top-tier undergraduate university and currently enrolled or recently graduated from a top-tier
business school
• 4-5 years work experience in a private equity, investment banking, or financial consulting organization
• Strong analytical, modeling, organizational, and writing skills
• A professional presence coupled with relationship skills to interact effectively with internal and external parties
• A highly-motivated, self-starter with the ability work independently within a team context
• Extensive personal and professional experience in Asia and Mandarin fluency is required
• Willingness to temporarily work in the Chicago office, then relocate permanently to Asia (Beijing or Singapore)

Salary for equivalent role (based on 2011-2012 Holt-Thomson Reuters PE/VC Compensation Report; this does not come from Adams Street Partners):
Average Base Salary Senior Associate at Secondaries Firm: $141,800; Average Salary + Bonus: $220,600

Contact: Please e-mail resumes and inquiries to Carolyn Flanagan, Human Resources, at cflanagan@adamsstreetpartners.com.

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