Private Equity Pink Slip Watch

It’s been just two weeks since this space first broached the prospect of private equity layoffs, but that’s been enough time for them to evolve from anecdotal theory to systemic reality. Here are the latest examples:

* Behrman Capital has laid off most of its San Francisco office, and also made a pair of layoffs in its New York headquarters. The middle-market buyout firm declined comment, although we hear that managing partner Bill Matthes will keep the SF light on with at least one other investment professional (another SF pro is relocating to NY). Behrman raised $1.2 billion for its third fund in 2001, but has been struggling to get anywhere near that level for Fund IV.

* The Financial Times reports that 3i Group tomorrow will announce plans to cut 15% of its workforce, or approximately 100 employees. About half of these cuts would come in the UK, including a large number of back-office jobs like marketing and human resources.

* American Capital yesterday began the process of firing 110 employees and closing two offices. The publicly-traded firm is not identifying which offices are being shut, but we here that likely candidates include Boston and one of its remaining California satellites (probably Palo Alto). [Update: Palo Alto is indeed closed]. That could be bad news for the technology growth equity practice, which includes some venture capital plays. We also hear that the buyout teams could be let go in Chicago, with sponsor finance remaining. Lots of the pink slips went out yesterday, with more to come today.

We’re also hearing that at least two U.S.-based mega-buyout firms are holding internal discussions about firm-wide cuts. If you’ve got any info about the same – or layoffs at any other PE or VC shop – please drop a note or use our anonymous tipbox