Last year was just miserable for private equity fund-raising in the United States. Hitting its lowest point since 2003, private equity (including venture capital) fell 68 percent to $95.8 billion across 331 funds, down from $300 billion across 508 funds in 2008,?according to Dow Jones LP Source.
No category of funds escaped the slowdown, except for secondary funds ? a major outlier that saw a more than 50 percent increase in fund-raising.
Here’s a summary of the other findings:
133 buyout funds raised $53.7 billion in 2009, down 72.5 percent from the $195.5 billion raised by 204 funds in 2008.
Of the buyout funds, the largest were the hardest hit, with only six funds larger than $6 billion raising $14 billion between them. In 2008, 12 of these funds brought in $75.2 billion. That’s a drastic change.
120 venture capital funds raised $13 billion, down 54.6 percent from the $28.7 billion raised by 204 funds the previous year.
Distressed funds, which buy undervalued assets or companies, raised $14.2 billion across 30 funds, a 66.9 percent drop from 2008, which was a record-setting year.
Mezzanine funds, which provide a middle-layer of financing (usually in the form of debt), brought in $3.3 billion across 20 funds, down 92.4 percent from the $43.1 billion raised by 24 funds last year.
37 funds of funds, which hold portfolios of other investment funds rather than investing directly, took in $8.3 billion in 2009, a 64 percent drop from the $23 billion landed by 55 such funds last year.
And of course the exception: Secondary funds, which specialize in purchasing portfolio investments from existing funds, raised $17.5 billion across 21 funds, up 57 percent from 2008, and setting a new record.