The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) says it has committed US$50 million to Clearlake Capital, a California-based private equity firm focused on special situations.
Reflecting how limited partners (LPs) have held back commitments to private equity since the financial crisis, the latest commitment is one of only ten that CalPERS made in private equity during 2012.
During the two years between 2006 and 2008, CalPERS committed US$36.7 billion to private equity firms approving more than 130 funds. Since then the Fund has deployed only US$5.2 billion in capital to 23 funds, including the ten made in 2012.
Other commitments CalPERS made during 2012 included a US$400 million investment to Cerberus Institutional Partners V, a US$500 million investment to Blackstone Tactical Opportunties-C and a US$500 million investment to GSO Capital Solutions Fund II.
Clearlake was previously part of CalPERS Emerging Manager Program through an investment in a fund-of-funds. The new commitment is a direct investment. The fund, Clearlake Capital Partners III, will make distressed and special situations investments in small and medium-sized companies.
CalPERS is the largest public pension fund in the U.S. with approximately US$260 billion in assets. The retirement system administers retirement benefits for more than 1.6 million current and retired California State, public school and local public agency employees and their families on behalf of more than 3,000 public employers in the state, and health benefits for 1.3 million enrollees.