Private equity firm Dominus Investment is nearing the final close of a 500 billion won ($460 million) fund focusing on mezzanine debt and equity, industry sources said.
The Seoul-based firm started to raise the blind-pool fund last year with a target size of 500 billion won. It held a first close of 304 billion won about six months ago with commitments from a number of South Korean institutional investors, including Yellow Umbrella, Government Employees Pension Service and the Military Mutual Aid Association.
The firm also recently won a private equity mandate from the Korean Federation of Community Credit Cooperatives, edging closer to the fundraising target. The final close of the vehicle is expected in coming weeks, according to sources.
Dominus Investment is known for its focus on a mezzanine investment strategy, in which it invests in hybrid securities issued by smaller companies with growth potential. This strategy limits downside risk and the firm’s strong track record has helped it earn support from domestic institutional investors, industry watchers said.
SI Flex, which manufactures flexible printed circuit boards, is among the latest investments made by Dominus Investment. The firm recently bought 40 billion won worth of redeemable convertible preferred shares issued by SI Flex, which, if converted, would represent about 20% of the company.
Dominus Investment invested 25 billion won in Ace Technologies for about 3.3 million shares of convertible preferred shares in June. Ace Technologies, which produces radio frequency devices and antennas, is expected to benefit from the rising demand for network equipment needed for 5G adoption.
In March, the private equity firm bought convertible bonds issued by book distributor Munhwa Book Distribution, which plans to expand its business areas to include apparel, cosmetics and pharmaceutical products.
Dominus Investment also launched an Indonesia office in 2015 to find opportunities for cross-border deals. The firm’s overseas portfolio companies include Micronesia Resort Inc in Saipan – an overseas subsidiary of E-Land Park, which is part of South Korean retail giant E-Land Group – in which the firm invested 130 billion won for two years from 2018. (Reporting by Ar-rum Rho)