Marlin sets $2 bln target, no cap, on flagship Fund V

  • Marlin sets $2 bln target, no cap, on Fund V
  • Expected to raise quickly
  • Targets $500 mln for next small-market fund

Marlin Equity is targeting $2 billion for its fifth flagship fund, without a cap, and sources expect the firm to raise well above target, according to two people with knowledge of the firm.

Whether Marlin is officially in the market is unclear. The firm has been talking to LPs about Fund V. The sources, both LPs in the market, said they expect Marlin to quickly exceed the target. “I’d be surprised if they get below $2.5 billion,” one of them said.

Marlin also is shopping its sophomore small-market fund targeting $500 million, one of the LPs said. The firm has said Heritage Fund II targets the same industries as the flagship vehicle, including tech, business services, healthcare, consumer and manufacturing.

Going forward, the Heritage team won’t include partner George Kase, a member of the Heritage investment committee, one of the LPs said. It’s unclear when Kase left Marlin, but he is no longer listed on the firm’s website. He was listed on the website as recently as March. Kase did not respond to a request for comment.

Marlin, which launched in 2005, was founded by David McGovern, a former executive at Gores Technology Group. Peter Spasov, a partner at Marlin, did not return a request for comment.

The firm closed Marlin Equity IV on $1.6 billion in 2013, and the debut Marlin Heritage on $400 million in 2014. Marlin IV was generating a 1.03x total value multiple as of July 31, 2016, performance information from New Jersey Division of Investment shows.

Marlin Equity III collected $650 million in 2009, which crunched its original $450 million target, and $300 million for Fund II in 2007, beating its $250 million target. How much the firm raised for its debut fund in 2005 is unclear.

Marlin in January announced the final close of its debut European small-market fund, Marlin Heritage Europe, on 325 million euros ($359 million).

Some LPs at the time expressed concern about Marlin’s jump in fund size from Fund III to Fund IV. The two LPs who recently spoke to Buyouts said Marlin is aggressive with fundraising, which could keep them from committing to Fund V.

The LPs said, however, they expected Marlin to hold a one-and-done fundraising for Fund V.

Action Item: Check out Marlin’s Form ADV here:

Photo of David McGovern courtesy of Marlin Equity