Private equity firm Gael Partners has held a first close of its debut fund, the Central Valley Fund, with $80 million in commitments. The fund, which has offices in Fresno and Davis, Calif., makes later stage investments in small- to mid-sized, low-tech companies located in California’s Central Valley region with revenues between $5 million and $50 million.
The California Public Employees Retirement System, Wells Fargo and Mid-State Bank, among others, are investors in the fund. “We’re focusing on what we think is an underserved market,” said California-native Brad Triebsch, a principal at the firm. “We are in full marketing mode and we’re looking for companies to invest in.” He said the firm currently has six-term sheets out but has not closed any deals.
“We’ve been well received,” added Triebsch, who expects that the fund will gain an additional $20 million in commitments by early in the first quarter of 2006, bringing it to approximately $100 million. Other principals at the firm include Dan Jessee, Jose Blanco, Bill Henderson and Todd Stemler.