Singapore-based private equity arm Olympus Capital Asia’s credit arm has spun out to form a new venture, Orion Credit Capital Asia Pte Ltd, it said on Monday.
"In December, the management team, which has spearheaded private credit efforts of Olympus Capital Asia since 2012, spun out from Olympus Capital Asia and rebranded the private credit business as Orion Capital Asia," it said in a statement.
As part of this transition, Orion Credit Capital has secured an equity investment from OMERS (Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System), a Canadian pension fund.
In a statement, Orion Credit said it will focus on direct lending in the Asia-Pacific region and will manage investment vehicles that will provide medium-term secured loans to mid-market enterprises sponsored by PE firms and local entrepreneurs.
The loans provided by these vehicles will help target companies finance their growth and acquisitions, with investments involving diverse sectors and bespoke solutions.
The development comes nearly a year after VCCircle reported that Olympus Capital Asia Credit was raising a new fund that would have a larger allocation for Indian companies. At the time, VCCircle also reported that Olympus had marked the first close of this second fund.
Meanwhile, the equity investment from OMERS will help Orion Credit Capital Asia strengthen its platform and accelerate its growth plans, it said in a statement.
“Growing our investment footprint in Asia is a strategic priority for OMERS and this investment is an important initiative in achieving our goals,” said Ashish Goyal, OMERS capital markets Asia senior managing director.
Rise of private credit
The spinoff of Orion Credit and the investment by OMERS also represents the continued rise in interest that private credit as an asset class is seeing from firms and limited partners.
Factors such as firms switching from the non-banking financial company (NBFC) model to asset managers chasing the premiums offered by this instrument have played a part in this trend.
OMERS, for example, is not the only Canadian pension fund to have invested in a private credit fund. In September, the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan tied up with Edelweiss Alternate Asset Advisors Ltd for a private debt platform that aims to invest $350 million (about Rs 2,565 crore) in India.
At the time, the two entities said the platform will focus on “performing and distressed private credit investment opportunities in the country”.
In February 2020, Canadian pension fund Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) and India’s Piramal Asset Management Pvt. Ltd jointly floated a private credit financing platform with a corpus of $300 million (about Rs 2,200 crore).
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board also struck a private credit deal via a fund format by investing in Bain Capital and Piramal Group’s India Resurgence Fund near the end of 2019.