Private equity firm LNK Partners, which has invested in Ariat and Au Bon Pain, has closed a $400 million fund that will be dedicated to investments in the consumer and retail space. LNK’s placement agent was Credit Suisse and its law firm was Paul, Weiss, Rifkin, Wharton & Garrison. The PE firm’s first fund was raised in 2006, this will be its second.
LNK PARTNERS CLOSES SECOND $400 MILLION FUND DEDICATED TO INVESTMENTS IN CONSUMER AND RETAIL BUSINESSES
— LNK Differentiated by Investing and Operating Track Records, Unparalleled Industry Relationships, and Highly Flexible Investing Approach —
WHITE PLAINS, NY, AUGUST 1, 2012 – LNK Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing in the consumer/retail sector, today announced the final closing of LNK Partners II, L.P. The fund, which was oversubscribed but capped at its $400 million target to allow the firm to continue to focus on investments in middle market consumer and retail businesses, received commitments from leading institutions and university endowments, as well as senior industry executives.
Investments of LNK’s first fund, which was raised in 2006, included the recapitalization of Ariat International, the premier marketer of equestrian related footwear and apparel; the recapitalization of Au Bon Pain, a leading fast casual restaurant chain; acquisition financing to support the purchase of Tommy Hilfiger by PVH, one of the largest and most profitable apparel companies in the world; and the recapitalization of Natural Food Holdings, which markets Niman Ranch, the leading all-natural brand of pork, beef and lamb.
The LNK team is distinguished by partners who have extensive experience and successful track records investing in, operating, or serving on the boards of premier consumer and retail businesses such as Staples, PVH, Quaker Oats, Pepsi, Panera Bread, and Life Time Fitness. The firm has access to an extensive network of relationships in the consumer and retail sector, and more than 100 senior industry executives have personally invested a total of more than $45 million in LNK’s funds. Under LNK’s concentrated investment approach, which enables its partners to provide extensive support to portfolio company management teams, the firm invests up to $150 million per transaction.
David Landau, a partner of LNK, stated: “With our new fund, we will continue to back great management teams who are building outstanding consumer and retail businesses. I think the very strong support from existing investors and the high level of interest from new investors reflects LNK’s unique position among private equity firms based on our partners’ exceptional investing and operating track records, the firm’s unparalleled network of industry relationships, and our highly flexible approach to investing.”
Henry Nasella, a partner of LNK, continued: “Few, if any, investment firms can support management teams with the broad capabilities that we have developed. As many of our partners are former CEOs who have successfully run great, growth-oriented companies, we are able to bring a unique perspective to the management teams that we back.”
Jeff Perlman, a partner of LNK, concluded: “The management teams with whom we partner are able to leverage LNK’s broad array of operational, financial and strategic resources, including our extensive network of senior industry executives and advisors.”
LNK recently exited its investment in Ariat, selling the company to the Fisher family, a long-standing minority investor in the business. While the price was not disclosed, the investment generated an outstanding return, driven by the company’s significant growth.
LNK’s placement agent for the fundraising was Credit Suisse and its law firm was Paul, Weiss, Rifkin, Wharton & Garrison LLP.
About LNK Partners
LNK Partners is a private equity firm focused on backing strong management teams who are building outstanding consumer and retail businesses. LNK’s current portfolio includes its investment in PVH’s (NYSE: PVH) acquisition of Tommy Hilfiger, Au Bon Pain, and Natural Food Holdings (Niman Ranch). LNK’s partners have extensive experience successfully investing in, operating, or serving on the boards of many leading consumer and retail businesses, including Staples, PVH, Quaker Oats, Pepsi, Panera Bread, Life Time Fitness, Calvin Klein, Gatorade, and Levi Strauss.
LNK also is distinguished by the high degree of flexibility in the type, structure and size of its investments, and its willingness to be a minority or majority shareholder. LNK invests in a broad range of investment types, including growth capital, buyouts and recapitalizations. LNK invests up to $150 million per transaction.