TVG launches $500m fund

TVG Capital Partners, famous for bets on Japan Telecom and inter-touch, has launched its third fund, a $500m vehicle that has already amassed $100m in commitments.

TVG Capital Partners, the Hong Kong- and Sydney-based VC firm, is raising its third fund, TVG Capital Partners Fund III. The vehicle, according to documents submitted with the Securities and Exchange Commission, has so far raised $100 million of a targeted $500 million (€424 million).

Varun Bery, co-founder and managing director, TVG Capital Partners

The firm has a particular focus in the Asia-Pacific region. TVG’s sector strategy encompasses the communications, media and technology industries, where it will pursue deals ranging in stage from startups to buyouts, and will also include the occasional turnaround situation.

TVG’s track record boasts an investment in Japan Telecom, which it sold in a wildly successful deal alongside Ripplewood Holdings to Softbank Corp. last year. The firm has also made bets on Korean fixed-line telephone and internet group Hanarotelecom, in an investment with Newbridge Capital and AIG, and Singapore’s inter-touch, a broadband outfit that reportedly yielded a more than 2x return for TVG through a sale to Japan-based NTT DoCoMo.

The new fund marks the firm’s first under its new name, TVG. This past spring, the firm did away with its previous handle, Telecom Venture Group.

TVG is headed by co-founders Varun Bery and John Troy. The pair had formerly served as executives of Asian Infrastructure Fund Advisors Ltd. (AIFAL), where they had managed the AIF Telecommunications Fund. That vehicle later became TVG Asian Communications Fund I, when the pair spun out from AIFAL in 1998. The group, which had focused almost exclusively on telecom at AIFAL, expanded its investment reach with the spinout to include media and technology.

The firm’s TVG Asian Communications Fund I, which closed in 1997, reportedly took in about $160 million, while TVG Asian Communications Fund II, raised in 2000, amassed more than $430 million in capital.

TVG indicated in the SEC filings that it would be seeking $500 million for its third fund, although press reports from last December speculated the vehicle would carry a target as high as $600 million.