Greenhill’s first European close

US bank Greenhill has held the first closing of its debut European fund, with 61 percent of the equity coming from the firm and its employees, as the latest example of an investment bank increasing its private equity activity.

US investment bank Greenhill has held the first close of its debut European mid-market fund at £106 million ($210 million, €155 million).

Robert Greenhill: chairman and ceo of the eponymous investment bank.

Greenhill has committed £25 million and Greenhill’s managing directors have also committed a further £39.5 million. The remaining 39 percent has been raised from a variety of institutional investors, wealthy families and corporate executives.

The fund will invest in the UK and mainland Europe and will make controlling or influential minority investments of £10 million to £30 million pounds in companies with enterprise values of £50 million to £250 million.

Robert Greenhill, chairman and chief executive of Greenhill, said the firm’s first European fund is a means of expanding the company’s merchant banking activities. Like the firm’s US fund, the European vehicle will focus on smaller transactions than the firm’s client advisory service to avoid potential conflicts, he added.

Investment banks are pouring more and more money into private equity at the moment. Goldman Sachs closed the biggest-ever private equity fund last month at $20 billion (€14.8 billion), while other players like Bear Stearns and Morgan Stanley are punching their weight against the world’s largest private equity firms.