Where the Money Came From for PE/VC In 2011

Public pension funds accounted for just about a third of the money raised by private equity and venture capital firms last year, according to a survey of placement agents conducted this spring by sister Buyouts Magazine. So, where did the rest come from?

The usual suspects, although not necessarily in the usual order. Funds of funds came in second place the last two years that we’ve run this survey. This year funds of funds fell to third, accounting for 13 percent of money raised, behind endowments and foundations, at 14 percent. Other signficant sources included corporate pension funds (12 percent), and family offices (10 percent).

All told about 19 placement agents completed the relevant question in our survey, accounting for approximately $8 billion raised. That, of course, represents only a small portion of the total capital raised by PE/VC firms around the world last year. Also bear in mind that it is a minority of firms that hire placement agents to raise money. About two in five North American buyout funds use them, according to the latest edition of PE/VC Partnership Agreements Study 2012-213; for North American venture funds it’s less than that, just one in four.

The survey also asked placement agents where they raised the money. About twenty-one placement agents answered that question, accounting for some $8 billion raiesd last year. The results: Two-thirds of the capital came from the United states, 23 percent from Europe, 5 percent from Canada, 3 percent from Asia-Pacific and 2 percent from the Middle East.

Subscribers to Buyouts Magazine and Venture Capital Journal can get the full set of fundrasing statistics in this year’s Guide to Secondary Buyers & Placement Agents.

David M. Toll is editor-in-charge of Buyouts Magazine.