Interest in co-investment opportunities has increased substantially over the last couple of years. In tune with client needs, Andrea Auerbach and her team at Cambridge Associates started finding co-investment opportunities for clients. In 2014, the firm decided to create a formal initiative around co-investing.
“Co-investment was becoming more mainstream—a part of a regular balanced investment diet—so we made the decision to start an entire practice rather than continue to look at opportunities on an ad-hoc basis. We are much more programmatic about it today,” says Auerbach.
In addition to managing about 50 professionals, Auerbach spends a majority of her time assessing investment opportunities. In the last year alone, Auerbach and her team evaluated over 300 transactions aggregating over $20 billion in available co-investment, but the firm ultimately only recommended 15 deals for co-investment.
“We have a rigorous review process and not that many deals make through our process,” says Auerbach, adding that she likes the co-investment model. “You get a much better understanding and idea of what a firm is like and you learn more about the deal,” says Auerbach.
Auerbach’s favorite part of the job is discovering new investment opportunities. “When you meet a first-time fund, you are so excited for them. We love supporting emerging managers and first-time funds,” says Auerbach, adding that 50 percent of top ten managers by vintage year are actually investing out of their first or second fund.