Raven Capital nears goal for third ABL fund

 The New York-based credit firm is $20 million away from its target.

Raven Capital Management is on the cusp of hitting its $350 million fundraising goal for a third incarnation of an asset-based lending (ABL) fund more than a year after it started marketing.

The New York investment shop has locked up total commitments of $330 million, with another $20 million pending, for its Raven Asset-Based Opportunity Fund III, according to presentation materials from the Stanislaus County Employee Retirement Association (StanCERA) 28 June meeting.

The fund targets investments of $5 million to $35 million that last three years, according to the presentation materials.

Raven will invest approximately 60 percent of its capital in direct first-lien senior secured loans and the remaining 40 percent of capital to opportunistic acquisitions of cash-flowing assets. The fund targets returns of 14 percent to 18 percent. The vehicle has closed eight deals since July 2015.

At its April 2015 meeting, the Modesto, California-based StanCERA approved a $15 million investment with the Raven fund. Verus is StanCERA’s advisor, which recommended the investment. Another California pension fund, the San Joaquin County Employees’ Retirement Association, also committed $50 million to the Raven’s third ABL fund. 

StanCERA is no stranger to Raven Capital. At its February 2013 meeting, StanCERA voted to put $40 million of its first $110 million committed to direct lending to the Raven Asset-Based Opportunity Fund I. For its other initial direct lending investments, StanCERA committed another $40 million to White Oak Global Advisors and $30 million the Medley Opportunities Fund II.

StanCERA agreed to move into the direct lending space at a November 2012 meeting. The pension fund had then set a 7.5 percent target to direct lending strategies and recently increased it to 14 percent.