Private equity firm Dominus Investment has secured 304 billion won ($257 million) in the first close of its new blind-pool fund, with a final close expected before the end of this year, industry sources said on August 11.

The Seoul-based firm began marketing the fund to institutional investors last year as its latest flagship fund – NV Private Equity Fund III which closed in 2017 with committed capital of 480 billion won – invested most of its capital. It aims to raise a total of 500 billion won.

Dominus Investment is known for specializing in mezzanine investments. Investors in its new fund include Yellow Umbrella Mutual Aid Fund, the Government Employees Pension Service and the Military Mutual Aid Association.

The firm has a proven track record and a reputation of building a strong relationship with its portfolio companies to add value to them. This has helped the firm raise money from new and existing investors, industry watchers said.

In 2016, NV Private Equity Fund II, the firm’s 195 billion-won fund of 2014 vintage, invested in Daemyung Sonoseason Co Ltd, a wholesale and retail distributor of electronic and machine parts which was formerly known as Daemyung Corporation. Its three-year investment reportedly produced an internal rate of return of 20%.

Dominus Investment also injected a total of 130 billion won for two years from 2018 into Micronesia Resort Inc, which is South Korean retail giant E-Land’s overseas subsidiary. Its businesses include Kensington Hotel Saipan, Pacific Islands Club and Coral Ocean Point Resort Club.

Most recently Dominus Investment invested 25 billion won in Ace Technologies. The wireless communication equipment provider is expected to generate more revenue from its 5G equipment business from 2021. It plans to use the proceeds from Dominus Investment to expand its manufacturing facilities in Vietnam. (Reporting by Ar-rum Rho)