Private equity firm SVG cautious over payouts

(Reuters) – Private equity company SVG Capital, which puts much of its capital into buyout firm Permira, said the tough economic climate meant the timing of any future payouts to its investors was difficult to predict.

“We have a portfolio of high quality and maturing assets. However, given the continued uncertainty of the macro-economic outlook, the specific timing of future distributions is difficult to predict with any certainty,” SVG said on Thursday.

SVG, whose chairman Nicholas Ferguson is to leave the company to replace James Murdoch as BSkyB chairman, reported that its net assets per share had risen by 16.6 percent to 393.20 pence.

It added that despite the uncertain market environment, the overall performance of companies in its portfolio remained good.

The private equity industry has had a difficult time as tough trading conditions and high debt burdens cripple many companies.

Listed investors, such as SVG, suffered not only from indirect exposure to private equity-owned companies, but also from the fact that they themselves borrowed money to boost performance in their funds.

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