The ranking is based on the fair value of investors’ private debt investment portfolios. This fair value is measured at a single point in time for all investors to provide an apples-to-apples comparison. For the 2022 ranking, this is 31 December 2021. This is a ranking of investors only and not fund of funds, private debt funds or banks.
Private Debt Investor’s Research & Analytics team will seek to communicate directly by phone and email with investors to find out the fair value of their private debt portfolio as described above. In the absence of primary data, the team will gather data from secondary sources and seek to validate the researched figure with the investors themselves before we publish the final list.
- The definition of private debt investment, for the purposes of this ranking, is: capital committed by investors to a dedicated programme of investing in the debt of private companies, or the non-bank debt financing of leveraged buyouts, private infrastructure projects and private real estate. This includes distressed debt, funds of private debt funds, royalty financing, senior debt, subordinated/mezzanine debt, unitranche and venture debt. The debt investments, whether held directly or via a fund, must not be issued or traded in an open market, to count in the ranking.
- Both investors with a defined allocation to private debt, as well as those which are active investors in private debt funds but may not have a defined allocation, are considered for this ranking. Where the investments are made in what may be termed a “grey area”, we reserve the right to make the final judgment based on applicability according to our definition.
- Investors’ definition of private debt may not entirely mirror the definition given above. Hence, we will use discretion to determine the most appropriate figure for each investor profiled.
Structures and strategies
Capital committed or invested into private debt through the following strategies should be included:
- Funds (both open-ended and close-ended)
- Separately managed accounts
- Commitments to fund managers that happen to be publicly traded
- Capital committed to co-investment vehicles
- Private placement debt (or direct debt investments)
- Proprietary capital only – we do not consider assets managed on behalf of third parties
- Investors with direct lending platforms themselves are also considered for this ranking.
What doesn’t count?
- Expected commitments: we do not count pending or future commitments and investments or the uncommitted portion of an institution’s target allocation
- Hedge funds: we do not count hedge fund strategies as these primarily target liquid securities or trading strategies
- Bank loans
- Any form of public debt (including publicly traded corporate bonds)
- Opportunistic investments: as there is no hard capital allocation to an investment programme
- Third party capital: we do not count capital raised from third parties for investment into private debt