Churchill raises $1.1bn, more than doubling fund’s expected size

Nuveen’s private credit arm specialising in senior loans could lever the vehicle up to 2x.

Churchill Asset Management has held a final close on its Churchill Middle Market Senior Loan Fund (SLF), its first vehicle as part of Nuveen after joining the financial conglomerate in April 2015.

New York-based Churchill’s vehicle closed on $1.1 billion in commitments, far surpassing the expected $500 million and maximum of $600 million outlined in a Miami Beach Employees’ Retirement Plan October 2016 memo briefing the pension fund on a meeting with the firm.

Among limited partners committing money were the General Retirement System of the City of Detroit and Oakland County Retirement and Deferred Compensation Board ($40 million).

A representative for the firm could not be reached for comment.

The SLF will invest in senior debt and unitranche loans in businesses with EBITDA of up to $100 million that are backed by private equity sponsors with an average loan size of $25 million-$40 million, according to the Miami Beach documents.

The seven-year fund consists of a three-year investment period and a four-year harvest period. Fees included a 0.75 percent management fee on invested capital and a 10 percent incentive fee over a 7 percent hurdle rate, the memo revealed. The fund will aim for a 10-12 percent return with leverage, which could be up to 2x the committed capital.

Earlier this month, the firm also closed its second mid-market collateralised loan obligation at a size of $307.2 million, which was arranged by Wells Fargo, according to CreditFlux. In September of last year, the firm closed its first $382.2 million mid-market collateralised loan obligation. In January, the firm added David Heilbrunn as head of product development and capital raising.

The firm, which manages over $3.7 billion in committed capital, focuses exclusively on sponsored transactions.