Private equity fundraising has slowed down in 2018, after a strong 8-year run. The amount of capital raised annually for new funds by U.S. private equity firms increased more than threefold from 2010 (when nearly $71 billion was raised) to 2017 (when $243 billion was raised). But U.S. PE firms closed only $69 billion worth of new funds during the first half of 2018, a far cry from 2017 and on pace for a six-year low, according to Pitchbook. See Mergers & Acquisitions’ look at 10 PE firms that have succeeded in raising new funds recently despite the slowdown, including the Carlyle Group (Nasdaq: CG), PPC Partners, Soundcore Capital Partners and Sycamore Partners. For fundraising news on an on-going basis, see our weekly column, PE fundraisng scorecard: Canson Capital and G Squared Opportunities.
Constellation Brands Inc. (NYSE: STZ) is spending C$5 billion ($3.8 billion) to raise its stake in cannabis grower Canopy Growth Corp. (NYSE: CGC) in what the owner of Corona beer described as the biggest investment yet in the growing marijuana industry. The agreement, which could eventually give the Victor, New York-based beverage company more than a 50 percent stake in Canopy within three years, follows an initial purchase of a 10 percent stake in Canopy in 2017. “Over the past year, we’ve come to better understand the cannabis market, the tremendous growth opportunity it presents, and Canopy’s market-leading capabilities in this space,” Constellation CEO Rob Sands told Bloomberg News. Makers of alcoholic beverages, searching for new sources of growth as their traditional business slows in many developed markets, are looking to cannabis as Canada and some U.S. states ease regulations. For more on M&A trends, read How to seize M&A opportunities in marijuana’s gray market. Read the full story: Constellation extends marijuana bet with canopy deal.
Cabot Microelectronics Corp. (Nasdaq: CCMP) is buying KMG Chemicals Inc. (NYSE: KMG) for about $1.6 billion. Goldman Sachs & Co. (NYSE: GS) and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz are advising Cabot. KeyBanc Capital Markets Inc. (NYSE: KEY), Shearman & Sterling LLP and Haynes and Boone are advising KMG. J.P. Morgan (NYSE: JPM), Bank of America and Goldman Sachs are providing financing.
ADP (Nasdaq: ADP) has bought Celergo LLC, a provider of payroll management services, from Frontier Capital. Baird advised Frontier.
Identity protection company EZShield, a portfolio company of the Wicks Group, has acquired IdentityForce, a theft protection provider for businesses and consumers. “As cybercrimes increase in number and complexity, our combined expertise and our superior customer satisfaction ratings will enable us to provide the greatest digital security measures available,” says IdentityForce CEO Steven Bearak.
GlobalTranz Enterprises Inc. has bought freight brokerage and logistics company SynchOne LLC. The deal is GlobalTranz’s sixth acquisition since the beginning of 2017.
Private investment firm Rising Sun Ventures purchased a majority stake in Eyenalyze, a software firm that focuses on data analytics for restaurant owners and franchises.
Calen Angert and Nicholas Leppla have joined TA Associates as vice presidents. Angert was previously with Morgan Stanley and focuses on the healthcare sector. Leppla was previously the chief of staff at former TA portfolio company AVG Technologies. He focuses on the tech sector.
Mergers & Acquisitions has announced the Rising Stars of Private Equity. These 11 up-and-coming investors are expected to play significant leadership roles in the future. Congratulations to:
Daniel Hopkin, Partner, Kainos Capital
John Kos, Principal, GTCR
Erik Latterell, Director, Stone Arch Capital
Ethan Liebermann, Principal, TA Associates
Jaime McKenzie, Director, Monomoy Capital
Jennifer Roach, Vice President, Yellow Wood Partners
Joseph Rondinelli, Principal, Frontenac
David Shainberg, Vice President, Balmoral
Tom Smithburg, Vice President, Shore Capital Partners
Nicholas Stone, Managing Director, Cyprium Partners
Afaf Ibraheem Warren, Senior Associate, Siris Capital
For profiles of the emerging leaders, see Meet Mergers & Acquisitions’ 11 Rising Stars of Private Equity.
In today’s M&A landscape, the definition of due diligence must expand beyond conventional financial metrics to include a company’s digital strategy and capabilities strengths and weaknesses as well. Traditionally, due diligence has focused on examination of the assets, liabilities and overall fiscal health of the target company. That will continue. Financial statements, quality of earnings reports, commercial diligence and legal are the backbone of the diligence process. But investors must now extend their M&A due diligence to include “digital diligence.” In our digital economy, every company is a technology company—which means every company lives and dies by how effectively it embraces technology and protects itself against cyber threats. That means acquirers need to take a hard look at everything digital to see if the target company has a true tech strategy in place. Read the full guest article by CohnReznick’s Jeremy Swan: Giving digital diligence its due.
Exponent, a new group of women dealmakers, brought together 200 women from private equity funds, investment banks, entrepreneurs and advisors for the Exponent Exchange, featuring Sallie Krawcheck as the keynote speaker. Previously the CEO of Wall Streetbanks, including Merrill Lynch Wealth Management and Citi Private Bank, Krawcheck serves as the CEO of Ellevest, an online investing platform for women. Mergers & Acquisitions participated in the event as an in-kind sponsor, and editor-in-chief Mary Kathleen Flynn moderated Spotlight Panel, From Startups to Showtime: Investment Case Studies. Check out our slideshow, Exponent drew 200 women dealmakers to event featuring Sallie Krawcheck.
Summer reading list: From stories of star athletes Arnold Palmer, Keith Hernandez and Tiger Woods to advice from entrepreneurs Bridgewater Associates’ Ray Dalio, KPCB’s John Doerr, Nike’s Phil Knight and Brava Investments’ Nathalie Molina Niño, plus strategies to help business leaders in general, and female dealmakers in particular, the 15 books on Mergers & Acquisitions’ list entertain, instruct and inspire. Check out our listicle: Dealmaker’s guide to summer reading: 15 new books.