Partners Group, the global private markets investment manager, is building a headquarters for its Americas operations, in order to support the continued growth of its business in the region. The firm will develop a purpose-built "campus" in the Denver Metro Area capable over time of accommodating several hundred employees, the first phase of which is expected to be completed in 2018. Partners Group will open a temporary office in Denver from May 2016 until the new campus is ready.
Dr. Charles Dallara, Partner and Chairman of the Americas, Partners Group, comments: "Our intention is to build a hub for our Americas activities, in the same way that our headquarters in Zug, Switzerland, and our Singapore office serve as hubs for Partners Group in Europe and Asia. We will invest a significant amount of time and resources into building our Colorado campus, which is a reflection of our commitment to the Americas. We believe Colorado is a great fit for Partners Group and are excited to be able to offer our employees the option of working there."
Partners Group opened its first US office in New York in 2000, adding offices in San Francisco and Houston in 2007 and 2014 respectively. It opened a São Paulo office in 2011. Today, the firm employs around 150 people in the Americas across its business lines. Given the pace of growth of its North American business, the firm envisages further broadening its US team in the mid-term, with the Colorado campus serving as the main base for that expansion. Partners Group will maintain significant offices in New York, Houston and São Paulo, however, it is anticipated that once the Colorado office is operational, the firm will gradually relocate its San Francisco operations there. David Layton, Partner and Co-Head Private Equity, will relocate from New York to head the Americas headquarters in Colorado and will be joined by other colleagues from across the US business.
David Layton states: "With clients and investments located across the US, we chose Colorado because of its central location, as well as the high quality of life the state offers to our employees. Denver is one of the fastest-growing cities in the US, with a highly educated workforce, and it is becoming a magnet for talented professionals who are seeking dynamic careers outside of the typical financial centers. In Colorado we will create a unique campus culture at the heart of our Americas business."
In 2015, almost half of Partners Group's investments globally on behalf of its clients were made in North America. During the year, Partners Group’s private equity business added several new control investments to its North American portfolio, including KinderCare Education, the largest for-profit early childhood education company in the US, Dynacast, a leading global manufacturer of precision engineered metal components, and restaurant businesses Pacific Bells and World Wide Wings. The firm’s private infrastructure business acquired the passenger terminal at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (BBTCA) together with its partners in the Nieuport Aviation consortium, as well as a 25% stake in Sentinel Energy Center, an 800 MW California-based natural gas-fired power generation facility. Meanwhile, the private debt business invested over USD 200 million to support the acquisition of US dental services provider Affordable Care, Inc. and the private real estate team purchased a large portfolio of real estate assets, including hotels in New York and Tennessee, and invested in the development of a Class A multi-family residential project in Austin, Texas. Elsewhere in the Americas, Partners Group also raised over USD 500 million in new equity to support the continued platform expansion of its portfolio company Fermaca, a leading midstream operator of gas infrastructure in Mexico.
These and other investment activities have led Partners Group to receive international recognition for its Americas business. Partners Group was recently awarded Private Equity International's award for 'Mid-market firm of the year in North America, 2015', Private Equity Real Estate's award for 'North American multi-manager of the year, 2015', and Private Debt Investor's award for 'Deal of the year, Americas, 2015' for its investment into Lightower.
The firm is also recognized as a leader in terms of its client offerings. It was among the first private markets firms to offer semi-liquid private markets investment products to institutional clients. Its flagship US semi-liquid product was launched in 2009 and currently has around USD 1.7 billion in assets under management. Last August, Partners Group again broke new ground in the US in introducing a private equity fund for the country's defined contribution market. The offering, which is designed to be incorporated into structures such as target-date funds, provides access to private markets while at the same time providing daily liquidity and pricing and fulfilling the highly standardized purchase and redemption procedures that are requirements of the defined contribution system.