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Tenaska closes $838m power fund

The Omaha, Nebraska energy company has raised an $838m private equity fund to acquire energy and power assets.

Tenaska Capital Management, an affiliate of Tenaska Energy, has held a final closing on the Tenaska Power Fund, a private equity investment vehicle, with total equity commitments of $838 million (€697 million).

Formed in 2003 by the managing directors and owners of privately held Tenaska Energy, one of the largest power producers in the US, Tenaska Power Fund will leverage the expertise of its parent company to pursue acquisition opportunities in the energy industry. Capital for the fund was provided by a mix of institutional investors from the US, Canada and Europe.

The fund, which was formed in 2003, has already acquired two power generation facilities this year: a 315-megawatt power station in Virginia for $38 million and a 308-megawatt power peaking facility in Chicago for $89 million.

The fund is overseen by Paul Smith, senior managing director of Tenaska Capital, and Howard Hawks, chairman and chief executive officer of Tenaska Energy, which was last year ranked by Forbes as the 24th largest private company in the US.

While Tenaska is a strategic player raising a private equity fund, private equity firms themselves have been active in the energy industry lately. Earlier this month, Oaktree Capital Management and GFI Energy Ventures closed their second energy-focused vehicle, OCM/GFI Power Opportunities Fund II, on $1 billion. In August, LS Power Group closed on $1.2 billion for a power industry-focused fund. And that same month, Targa Resources, a portfolio company of global private equity firm Warburg Pincus, acquired the midstream energy business of Dynegy for $2.35 billion.