Richard Branson Enters a New Frontier: Private Equity

May 3, 2018, 11:52 AM UTC

Virgin Group founder Richard Branson is getting into the private equity game, becoming a star partner at a new fund managed by London-based Metric Capital.

As reported by the Financial Times, the fund will try to raise €500 million ($599 million) from institutional investors in order to scoop up consumer businesses.

According to the article, the fund will target companies—in areas such as luxury goods and food and beverage—where association with Branson will “give the company the potential to grow faster than it would do with anyone else.”

Buyout funds have recently been raising record-breaking amounts. Metric has assets of around $2 billion and, according to the FT, it has an internal return rate of roughly 30%.

“I have been impressed by the development and growth of Metric Capital,” said Branson, who initially made his name in the music business before branching out to everything from finance to space travel.

The British billionaire has known Metric boss John Sinik for a couple of decades. His deal with Metric will see him take a minority stake in the new fund, evaluate deals and draw on his extensive network of contacts.

The fund will reportedly donate 10% of its profits to women’s and children’s charities.

Metric Capital had not responded to a request for comment at the time of writing.

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