Multiples PE set to get IFC's backing for $900-mn third fund
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International Finance Corporation (IFC) plans to come in as a Limited Partner, or investor, in the third fund of mid-market private equity firm Multiples Alternate Asset Management Pvt. Ltd (Multiples PE).

Multiples PE is aiming to raise as much as Rs 6,530 crore ($900 million) for its third fund and IFC plans to invest a total of $70 million in the vehicle, the World Bank's private-sector investment arm said in a disclosure. While $20 million will come from IFC itself, the remaining will be from its asset management arm.

The third fund, Multiples Private Equity Fund III Ltd, will invest in mid-market companies in India across sectors such as consumer, financial services, healthcare, IT services, logistics and agriculture-related product and services opportunities.

Renuka Ramnath-led Multiples PE had hit the road for the third fund about a year ago. It had planned to raise $750 million for the third fund with a hard cap of up to $850 million. It had also started raising a sidecar, or co-investment, fund with a target size of $350 million at the same time. 

The PE firm marked the first close of the third fund in September last year after raising $400-500 million.

IFC has an active limited partner, or LP, portfolio in India where it backs private equity and venture capital funds. It also has an active direct private equity-style investment practice in India, and lends to companies as well. Just last week, IFC proposed to put $25 million (Rs 177 crore) into the debut fund of A91 Partners, which was floated last year by former Sequoia Capital executives VT Bharadwaj, Gautam Mago and Abhay Pandey. IFC has previously invested as an LP in Indian VC funds such as Chiratae Ventures (formerly IDG Ventures India), Stellaris Venture Partners and Pi Ventures.

In 2016, IFC had invested in Multiples PE's second fund, too. Apart from IFC, Multiples PE's limited partners in the past have included Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Dutch pension fund PGGM, the UK’s CDC Group, and pension and sovereign funds from Europe and West Asia.

Meanwhile, Multiples has been actively making investments out of its $635-million second fund.

In June last year, VCCircle reported that Multiples would buy a non-controlling stake in APAC Financial Services Pvt. Ltd, the non-banking financial company (NBFC) floated last year by former Deutsche Bank Asia-Pacific chief Gunit Chadha. 

In April, the firm said it would invest Rs 73 crore ($11.2 million) in Mumbai-headquartered Sanctum Wealth Management. Before that, it had backed drugmaker Natco Pharma.

Its other investments from its second fund include private-sector lender RBL Bank, human resource services firm PeopleStrong, Vastu Housing Finance Corp, textile company Arvind’s brand business arm Arvind Fashions and sports gaming platform Dream11.

In November 2017, the PE firm returned the principal from its $405-million debut fund, which was raised in 2011. 

*This article has been modified to clarify that Multiples PE had agreed to buy a non-controlling stake in APAC Financial.

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