That was the word this morning from Glenn Creamer, a senior managing director with Providence, during a “fireside chat” at the SuperReturn U.S. conference in Boston (conducted by yours truly). He said that his firm “wouldn’t make sense” as a public company, in part because it’s not interested in diversifying too much beyond its core investment strategy. Providence does have a debt investment unit that Creamer says will continue to grow, but there are no plans to launch a series of ancillary businesses.
Publicly-traded Blackstone Group (BX), for example, supplements private equity with real estate, fund placement, hedge and M&A advisory units. Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR) has hedge and capital markets groups. The Carlyle Group, which is expected to file later this year for an IPO, has real estate, hedge and infrastructure programs. In fact, it’s been argued that each of these firms is really more an alternative asset manager founded in private equity, rather than private equity firms that have side businesses. That is not the case with Providence.
I also asked Creamer about when Providence portfolio company Hulu might be filing to go public, but he declined to comment (no surprise). He also didn’t discuss his firm’s current fundraising efforts, due to SEC marketing restrictions.