Vedacorp logo

November 25, 2015 The Economic Times

Avigo Capital exits Technology Frontiers, sells stake to ADV Partners

NEW DELHI: Troubled private equity firm Avigo Capital has exited its investment in sports, entertainment and media management firm Technology Frontiers, having sold its stake to Asian private equity firm ADV Partners.

The exit, through the secondary route, will see mid-market PE firm earn about $21 million from the transaction, a 2X return on its $10 million investment in the company, made originally in 2011. The deal also values Technology Frontiers at about $85 million, post-money, according to people with direct knowledge of the developments.

When contacted by ET, Mahendra Swarup, managing director and partner at Avigo India, confirmed Avigo Capital’s exit, but declined to share deal specifics, citing confidentiality clauses.

This is the first exit recorded by Avigo Capital from its third fund, which has a corpus of about $245 million.

ADV Partners, which was founded in 2013 by a group of ex-Mount Kellett Capital Management executives, has invested in the company through its maiden fund, ADV Opportunities Fund-I, a $545 million, Asia-focused fund, which is backed by fund-of-funds Asia Alternatives, a sovereign wealth fund, a superannuation fund, multiple US state pension programs, endowments and family offices.

Chennai-based Technology Frontiers partners with a number of global sports leagues, broadcasters and sporting regulatory bodies, including, Barclays Premier League, Indian Premier League, BCCI and ESPN.

The company provides arena management services and technology solutions, such as digital display solutions, content management software and interactive solutions for global sporting events.

In August 2013, ET was the first to report that Technology Frontiers had received funding from Dubai-based FidelisWorld, which operates a sports-themed investment fund, FW Sports Investment Fund.

Avigo Capital’s exit comes at a time when the private equity firm is involved in an ugly spat with its Limited Partners, led by Siguler Guff, who was reported to have taken control of the fund, following charges of negligence and mismanagement. Other investors in the fund include IFC — the private investment arm of the World Bank, British development finance institution CDC and Squadron Capital, amongst others.

The dispute has resulted in Achal Ghai, co-founder and managing partner of the fund, quitting his position. However, the fund managers will get around 60 per cent of ‘carry’ — or the share of profits investment managers get in excess of the amount they contribute to the partnership – upon exits from the existing portfolio companies.

The PE firm, which has raised more than $350 million across three funds, has recorded two other exits, including its position in homegrown denim company Spykar Lifestyle to Metmin Investments, an HNI fund in 2014.