Access secures first commitment for second fund of debt funds

 The Paris-based manager’s second fund of debt funds is targeting €250 million and will have a broader remit than its mezzanine-focused predecessor.    

French fund manager Access Capital Partners has secured its first commitment for its €250 million fund of debt funds. The firm is hoping to finalise further commitments by the end of July, allowing the firm to hold a first close.

Philippe Poggioli, managing partner at Access Capital Partners, told Private Debt Investor: “The second generation private debt fund shows an evolution versus the previous fund of debt funds the firm currently manages. In 2007, demand then was for mezzanine products. Today, opportunities are scattered and so is demand.”

Access Capital’s 2007 vehicle was relatively small, at €100 million. The new fund is expected to be substantially larger than the previous one, and is set to invest across mezzanine, junior and senior debt, both on primary and secondary markets. “We are broadening our scope. The strategy is to invest across Europe and to cover larger segments of the debt market.We are less dependent on mezzanine dealflow into this fund,” explained Poggioli.

Addressing the issue of fees, Poggioli said that co-investing directly in companies alongside the funds Access backs allows reducing management fees and improving performance. Access Capital expects to receive commitments from institutional investors, pension funds, and insurance companies. “Our coverage is broader, and so is our target [audience]. We expect to see interest from a wider range of investors. Having a niche is really important, but so is covering a breadth of sectors and regions.”

Access was founded in 1999 and has strategies covering secondaries, growth buyout and core private equity as well as private debt. It acquired the private equity unit of Finnish bank Pohjola in 2010, together with a €1 billion portfolio of assets, with the bank gaining a sizeable stake in ACP in return. Listed fund manager CapMan Group sold a four percent stake in Access Capital Partners in July last year.