Abu Dhabi-backed Carlyle raises $3.9bn for Asia fund

Marks the second-largest private equity fund ever raised for investments in the region
By Reuters
Wed 10 Sep 2014 11:20 AM

Carlyle Group, the US private equity firm in which Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Development Company owns a 7.5 percent stake, has closed its fourth Asia fund at $3.9 billion, the second-largest private equity fund ever raised for Asia investments.

The new fund adds to an estimated record $140 billion of uninvested capital, or dry powder, that private equity firms have raised for the region, prompting worries that there is too much money chasing too few deals.

But Carlyle's co-head of Asia buyouts, X.D. Yang, dismissed those concerns.

"The regional economy has become much, much bigger. Ten years ago a $500 million equity investment was huge, but today it's a medium-sized deal," Yang told Reuters in an interview.

"The companies are getting bigger, the economies are getting bigger and the private equity funds and deals are getting bigger," he added.

Carlyle Asia Partners IV, which will invest in deals in Asia excluding Japan, is 53 percent larger than the firm's previous fund for the region, and exceeded its target of $3.5 billion.

It is second only to KKR & Co's $6 billion Asia fund raised last year, and has already invested $700 million in equity in security systems firm ADT Korea.

By comparison, since the close of KKR's fund in July last year, KKR has announced eight deals which if completed would be worth around $2 billion in equity.

Carlyle is also raising funds for a separate fund to invest in Japan, aiming to gather as much as $1 billion, investors with knowledge of the plans have told Reuters.

Carlyle Group was founded in 1987 and currently has assets totalling around $31.5bn. Abu Dhabi wealth fund Mubadala bought its 7.5 percent stake the company in 2007.

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