Loan Note: Last chance to vote in awards; latest from the fundraising front

With the deadline tonight, it's time to record any final votes for our 2022 annual awards. Plus: fundraises from Muzinich and Capital Indigo; and the trade finance platform moving into private debt. Here's today's brief for our valued subscribers only.

They said it

“Perilously close to falling into recession”

The latest forecast for the global economy from the World Bank, as annual growth of 1.7 percent was predicted, down from a 3 percent prediction last June. It said the effects of higher interest rates was the key challenge for policy makers

First look

Last chance: Voting deadline is looming

A final reminder to vote
Voting in our annual awards comes to an end today at midnight PST. Some of our 50-plus categories remain too close to call, so no assumptions should be made, even as the finishing line comes into view. Many thanks to all those who have already taken time out to register their opinions, and helped to push the votes total towards another record. For those who have not done so yet, you have a matter of hours left!

Pan-Europe fund close for Muzinich
Fund manager Muzinich & Co has posted a final close of its senior debt-focused Pan-European Private Debt II fund on €800 million, having previously announced a first close on just over €356 million.

The firm’s first pan-European Private Debt Fund closed on €706.5 million in December 2018 and included commitments from Italian foundation/endowment Fondazione di Sardegna and Icelandic pension Festa Lifeyrissjoour, according to PDI data.

A press release from Muzinich said the fund will provide customised, flexible debt capital solutions to lower mid-market companies in the UK and the rest of Europe. The fund is an Article 8 product under the EU’s Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation and will use a proprietary ESG scorecard to assess companies’ ESG credentials.

“Interest in European private debt continues and we are witnessing more capital flows with investors attracted by rising yields in tandem with Europe’s higher interest rates,” said Kirsten Bode, pan-Europe co-head of private debt.

Mexico’s Capital Indigo posts first close
Mexico City-based fund manager Capital Indigo has completed the first closing of its Indigo Private Debt 3 Fund for approximately 3.3 billion pesos ($170 million; €162 million).

Indigo Private Debt 3 is targeting up to 4.0 billion pesos and is focused on providing loans of between 80 million pesos and 300 million pesos to medium-sized Mexican companies in various sectors and industries for growth purposes. The fund aims to invest in profitable companies with revenues of approximately 100 million pesos to 1.0 billion pesos.

The firm said that, in the first closing, three of the most active pension funds in alternative investments in Mexico took part.


Tradeteq expands into private debt and real assets
Tradeteq, a London-based software company best known for a cloud-based platform that facilitates the securitisation and distribution of trade finance assets, is expanding its offerings.

In a statement on 9 January, Tradeteq said it is extending its “securitisation as a service” into private debt and real assets to ease trading between banks and investors.

There is roughly $3.5 trillion in private debt and real assets under management globally. But there is a lot of friction in the trading of these assets. The statement observed that for banks and other asset sellers, setting up trading infrastructure can be lengthy and incur a lot of expense. On the buy side, traditional asset managers can face high operational costs due to manual workflows.

Tradeteq’s chief executive officer, Christoph Gugelmann, said in the statement that for years the company has been “working with global banks, asset managers and credit insurers to help turn trade finance into a liquid asset”. It has become clear over that period that “the same challenges around lack of investor access and automation apply equally to other forms of private debt and real assets”. Accordingly, the same infrastructure that has served to assist in the trade finance space can be turned to the benefit of other assets and their markets.

According to its website, Tradeteq was founded in 2018. The following year, it launched its trade finance distribution initiative. In 2021, it was selected by Commerzbank as the technology standard in the sale of trade finance assets.

New syndicated loan head for Antares
Chicago-based fund manager Antares Capital has appointed Seth Katzenstein as managing director and head of broadly syndicated loans to build the firm’s broadly syndicated loan business. He will be based in New York and report to Vivek Mathew, head of asset management.

Katzenstein has more than 25 years of experience in managing senior secured loan, high yield bond and distressed debt strategies. He joins from Intermediate Capital Group, where he established the firm’s US liquid credit platform and was head of US loans and high yield, managing more than $6 billion across 20 funds. Prior to ICG, he was at Black Diamond Capital Management as a managing director focused on portfolio management, credit trading and CLO origination.

LP watch

Institution: West Virginia Investment Management Board
Headquarters: Charleston, US
AUM: $22.9 billion
Allocation to private debt: 3.67 percent

West Virginia Investment Management Board (WVIMB) will raise its exposure to private debt and other asset classes, according to its recent board material.

The public pension will increase its private debt allocation by 1 percentage point, from 5 percent to 6 percent.

WVIMB currently allocates 3.67 percent of its total investment portfolio to private debt, totalling $840.43 million in capital. Its recent private debt commitments have tended to focus on distressed and senior debt vehicles that have a real estate sector focus, across the US.

The other changes in its private markets allocations include an increase of 2 percentage points to real estate and 2 percentage points to private equity.

Today’s letter was prepared by Andy Thomson with John BakieChristopher Faille and Robin Blumenthal