Wise Equity, an Italian lower-middle market private equity firm, has closed its fifth fund at a hard cap of 260 million euros. The fund’s limited partners included pension funds, insurance, fund of funds and large family offices. Rede Partners advised Wise on the fund.
Milan, 22 July 2019 – Wise Equity (“Wise”), a leading investor in the Italian lower middle market, has held a first and final close for its fifth fund at its hardcap of €260m less than two months post launch.
Founded in 2000, Wise is one of the most established Private Equity firms investing in the Italian lower middle market. The Firm targets Italian SMEs with Enterprise Values between €20 million and €70 million operating in niche, specialised sectors, which offer build-up opportunities and where Italian companies lead on a global basis. The firm is led by six experienced partners who have worked together for almost 20 years on average and are supported by six additional investment professionals.
Wisequity V attracted significant commitments from existing investors as well as selected new institutional investors, with the fund predominantly made up of leading pension funds, insurance, fund of funds and large family offices. International institutional investors from North America, Asia and Europe account for around two-thirds of total commitments, with the balance from Italian institutional investors and HNWIs.
The fundraise follows on from the recent success of Wisequity III and IV which to date have generated a realised MoC of 4.5x. Wisequity IV (2016) is fully invested across eight investments and has already returned about half of the fund following the first exit.
Michele Semenzato, co-founding Partner at Wise, added: This has been a different fundraising exercise for us, whereby we intentionally limited the fund size increase to enable us to continue focusing on our core strategy, and as a result, we did not heavily market the fund. We are very happy with the strong re-up rate from our existing investors, and also pleased to be able to welcome a few selected new LPs which we feel complement our investor base well. The team is excited to carry on deploying capital in Italian leaders operating in industry niches, which we feel continues to offer premium return opportunities.
Wise Equity SGR was advised by London-based Rede Partners, an independent fundraising and secondary advisor to the private equity industry.
Legal team for the fundraising was led by Legance – Avvocati Associati, an Italian independent law firm, with the support of Proskauer Rose LLP on non-Italian matters.
Wise Equity SGR
Wise Equity has been investing in the Italian lower middle market since 2000. Wise Equity is one of the most established firms in Italy, led by an experienced Partner group with a 20-year track record of completing transformational investments in niche SMEs. Wise Equity has completed over 30 investments to date executing on its strategy tailored to capture the Italian lower middle market opportunity. For further information, please visit www.wisesgr.com