Lagoon Capital Partners Limited, a private equity and advisory firm based in the Dubai International Financial Center and HarbourVest have entered into an agreement for secondary private equity whereby they will jointly source, evaluate and invest in private equity assets held by investors from the MENA region. The opportunities may include the acquisition of LP commitments in private equity funds, the purchase of portfolios of direct private equity investments, spin outs from existing private equity platforms and facilitating the restructuring of underperforming private equity funds.
Lagoon Capital Partners Limited (“Lagoon Capital”), a private equity and advisory firm based in the Dubai International Financial Center and regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority, and HarbourVest Partners L.P. (“HarbourVest”), one of the premier global institutions focused on secondary private equity, have entered into an agreement for secondary private equity whereby they will jointly source, evaluate and invest in private equity assets held by investors from the MENA region.
This will enable Lagoon Capital, which is backed by Qatar Insurance Company, to combine its regional relationships and investing expertise with HarbourVest’s 25+ year track record in evaluating, structuring and investing in secondary private equity portfolios globally.
The strategic relationship is focused on assets in the MENA region or sourced from investors in the region. The opportunities may include the acquisition of LP commitments in private equity funds, the purchase of portfolios of direct private equity investments, spin outs from existing private equity platforms and facilitating the restructuring of underperforming private equity funds.
Anuj Khanna, CEO of Lagoon Capital said, “Regional investors have been important players in the private equity asset class globally, however, many investors need to reposition their portfolios or exit positions entirely due to financial, strategic or regulatory considerations. To date, due to the lack of development of a secondary private equity market in the region, exits have been challenging. Our focus is to provide discrete and comprehensive liquidity solutions to our counterparties for their regional and global assets and, at the same time, help the natural and necessary evolution of the secondary market, which will in turn strengthen the appeal of private equity in the region as an asset class relative to other sources of capital.”
David Atterbury, Managing Director of HarbourVest, added, “We are keen to bring our secondary investing expertise to the MENA region. As has been the case in the US and Europe, secondary market activity has played a critical role in the growth of private equity through market cycles. Much like other regions, the MENA market also stands to benefit greatly from the entry of global secondary players and we’re pleased to join together with Lagoon Capital to support this development. Lagoon’s regional experience, reputation and connectivity will enable us to jointly pursue opportunities to the benefit of all stakeholders. Our most recent secondary fund, Dover Street VIII, with US$3.6 billion of capital will be the primary source of funds for these initiatives.”
Sunil Talwar, Deputy CEO of Qatar Insurance Company, also commented, “We are delighted that Lagoon Capital and HarbourVest have entered into this agreement for the MENA region. We believe their combined expertise and focus on Secondaries will provide regional investors a compelling alternative to achieving liquidity on their portfolios, while also freeing up capital for new investment opportunities.”
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Notes to Editors
Background on the private equity secondary market
Private equity and private market investments are generally long-term investments and as a result are often illiquid. To provide for early liquidity, a secondary market exists. A secondary transaction is the purchase of an existing private equity asset (as opposed to a commitment to a newly-formed fund or an investment directly into a company) by a secondary buyer from the existing investor (seller).
Transactions can include purchases of commitments to existing private equity funds, purchases of portfolios of operating companies, or more complex restructurings and spin-outs. For the seller, a secondary sale is often viewed as a tool for achieving liquidity, rebalancing their portfolio, or addressing regulatory changes.
About Lagoon Capital
Lagoon Capital Partners Limited, incorporated at the Dubai International Financial Center, is a private equity and advisory firm focused on providing regional investors with liquidity solutions for their private equity investment portfolios. Lagoon Capital is backed by Qatar Insurance Company and has an agreement with HarbourVest Partners L.P. to jointly source, evaluate and invest in private equity assets held by regional investors.
HarbourVest Partners, LLC is an independent global alternative investment firm and an SEC-registered investment adviser. HarbourVest provides investment programs for institutional investors to invest in venture capital, buyout, mezzanine debt, and distressed debt through primary partnerships, secondary purchases, and direct investments. HarbourVest and its subsidiaries have more than 250 employees, including 80 investment professionals deployed in Boston, London, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Bogotá, and Beijing. In more than 30 years of investing in private equity, the team has committed more than $25 billion to newly-formed funds, completed over $9 billion in secondary purchases, and invested $4 billion directly in operating companies. The firm’s clients consist of more than 300 active institutional investors, including pension funds, endowments, foundations, and financial institutions throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia, Latin America, and Japan.