Goldman Sachs Group Inc. raised $5.2 billion for a private equity fund that will buy early-stage companies that are typically small in size, a sign of confidence in an industry that’s confronting strong headwinds.
Goldman Asset Management’s West Street Global Growth Partners I exceeded its initial target and received $3.7 billion from institutional and high net worth investors, according to a statement. It also got a significant commitment from the firm and its staff, it said.
The fund targets enterprise and financial technology, as well as the healthcare and consumer sectors, where the pace of innovation “shows no sign of abating,” Julian Salisbury, Goldman’s chief investment officer for asset & wealth management, said in the statement.
The raising marks the largest first-time growth equity fund in history among global investors, surpassing the $4.5 billion raised by Blackstone Inc. two years ago for such a portfolio. Rising interest rates have put an end to the era of ultra-cheap credit and many firms have needed to reduce fundraising targets with investors overexposed to the private equity asset class.
CEO David Solomon has been seeking to turbo-charge efforts to bolster its fee-generating client assets and reduce the capital-intensive investing in the asset-management group, which amounted to $59 billion of on-balance sheet alternative investments at the end of last year. The bank is moving Matt Gibson, the global co-head of the technology, media and telecom group, outside of the dealmaking group, to help drive sales for the business of investing assets for clients, people with knowledge of the matter said earlier.
Goldman’s team will seek minority stakes in early to mid-stage businesses with an average investment threshold of $50 million. The fund is managed by the growth equity business within Goldman Sachs Asset Management, led by Darren Cohen, Nishi Somaiya and Stephanie Hui, based in New York, London and Hong Kong, respectively. The asset management division managed more than $2 trillion in assets globally as of Dec. 31, 2022.
West Street Global Growth Partners has already invested in a cloud data security, insurance distribution platform and trial supply management service provider. It has committed capital in AlphaSense, a U.S. market intelligence software company, and Exoteca, a French robotic warehouse systems provider. It also invested a stake in MegaRobo, a life sciences robotics solutions provider in China.