Private Equity Funds-Under-Management
Semaphore is the leading global professional services provider of Private Equity funds-under-management. Currently Semaphore holds fiduciary obligations as General Partner for six private equity funds and advises General and Limited Partners around the world.
Semaphore takes over troubled VC and PE funds at the invitation of Limited Partners as well as provides technology, operations, market due diligence and business advisory services to funds, corporations and institutions for their investments. Semaphore clients include Bank of America, Citicorp, HSBC, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, numerous public pension funds; dozens of Private Equity and Venture Capital partnerships; hundreds of corporate and academic institutional clients, government entities such as the London Metropolitan Police Service, the National Security Agency, and the UK intelligence agencies MI5 and MI6; as well as many national and international law firms.
Semaphore is committed to assisting Limited Partners and General Partners to rapidly develop solutions that meet their dynamic market and special business situations. The tested Semaphore Solution provides General Partners and Limited Partners independent assessment of current fund and portfolios through a defined due diligence process and tailored performance based operational metrics. These are coupled with active participation in the implementation process to achieve investment goals with multiple exit strategies.
Semaphore’s real-world practitioner resources work with Private Equity clients to define, develop and deploy operational strategies in performance based portfolio management, triage and liquidity event assistance in support of distressed funds. Through deployment of defined operating and portfolio management and implementation services, Semaphore affords visibility and insight into judgments regarding investment, operations, fund governance and management, use of proceeds and M&A.
Interim Fund Operations
Semaphore’s unique services and solutions provide direct managerial and operating assistance to both General and Limited Partners. Services include: assumption of interim operating roles, management consulting, and transaction advisory.
For example, serving as General Partner, interim operating officer or consultant; Semaphore’s professionals assist Clients in:
- real-world assessment of the current situation to facilitate development of a revised operating plan
- taking-over of fund operations
- researching and analyzing markets
- conducting financial and commercial analysis of portfolio companies
- creating strategic assessment of portfolio company technology, operational and business development requirements
- assisting with strategic partner development, joint venture development and international strategic development
- liquidation of assets
Fund and Portfolio Assessment
Semaphore conducts ILPA’s (Institutional Limited Partners Association) Best Practice Quality Assurance Program (QAP) reviews on Funds, Fund management and Fund portfolios. This Investment and Operations Audit service to the Private Equity community provides an independent review of the processes and judgments employed by a fund, its General Partners and/or managers - much as a Financial Audit reviews books and records. Such Reviews are done as a means of evaluating funds when LPs believe there is a possible problem or fulfilling defined Limited Partner Agreement conduct of such QAP reviews. In the latter case the QAP is conducted post publication of the Financial Audit and focus on the trailing twelve months or any other predetermined period up to a current date. Among the items audited:
- How closely the fund holds to its stated investment purposes
- Whether and how the fund fulfils its Partnership agreement
- Review of the Fund and LP relationships and mutual obligation(s)
- Practices employed in seeking and evaluating prospective investments
- Diligence processes employed in implementing investments
- Fund performance and activity as an investor and/or board member to portfolio investments
- Overall management condition of the fund, particularly its ability to provide follow-on investment and support
- Existing or imminent capital impairment and measures undertaken to repair deficiencies
- Independent portfolio Fair Market Valuation and/or affirmation of GP developed valuation
For General Partners
Semaphore Technology Diligence, market analysis, operations review, interim executive, portfolio review and project assurance skills have been utilized in literally hundreds of engagements covering over a billion dollars in Private Equity oriented transactions and individual portfolio companies. It provides Independent portfolio Fair Market Valuation and/or affirmation of GP developed valuation. Should GP's recognize problems in its own Partnership or operations then the ILPA QAP process can be self proscribed as described below with the benefit of self correcting deficiencies as appropriate.
For Limited Partners