Landmark Adds MD, Plans Direct Fund –

SIMSBURY, Conn. – Continuing its evolution from secondary investor to full-service private equity shop, Landmark Partners Inc. in early March announced the appointment of a new managing partner to lead the firm’s foray into direct investment.

Francisco Borges, the former treasurer of Connecticut and most recently a managing director at Financial Guaranty Insurance Co., will begin preparing Landmark to launch a new direct private equity fund sometime in the mid-year, according to Stanley Alfeld, chairman of the firm.

The fund will have a target of $200 million to $300 million and will seek to raise capital mostly from union pensions.

According to a source familiar with the subject, the pension funds of major labor union organizations, such as the AFL-CIO and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters – also known as the Taft-Hartley market – are a vastly underused source of capital for private equity funds. The source said bad publicity surrounding buyouts in the 1980s had prompted many unions to keep their money out of private equity.

Landmark recently held a final close on its eighth vehicle, a $500 million private equity fund. The fund marked Landmark’s expansion into direct co-investing and primary investing, in addition to its secondary investing specialty.

Mr. Alfeld said demand from the firm’s limited partners had prompted the decision to raise a direct investment fund.

Mr. Borges was treasurer of Connecticut from 1986 to 1993. During that time, he diversified the state pension away from public securities into private equity. During his tenure, the pension grew from $4.5 billion to $10 billion, Mr. Alfeld said.