If you are launching an investor targeting effort, you may want to go after some of the big-name private equity houses. They’re taking a greater interest in plain vanilla investments -- shares in public companies.
Just today, it was announced that TPG bought $2 bn in newly issued Washington Mutual (WaMu) securities as the ‘anchor investor’ in a larger offering to shore up the position of the subprime-battered bank. The two sides already know each other: TPG founding partner David Bonderman is a former WaMu director, and now he’s back on the board.
Some observers have pointed out that taking a simple stake in a public company isn’t so unusual for PE firms, especially Bonderman’s which is interested in distressed investments.
But the WSJ’s Deal Journal blogger Dennis Berman writes: ‘This deal is thick with irony.’
And Dealbook’s Andrew Ross Sorkin says in the New York Times: ‘Yes, the buyout kings have been reduced to playing in the same sandbox as the rest of us.’
North American editor