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TCRS: Retirement fund commits $40MM total to Bain Capital VF12, Canaan IX
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THE PRIVATE-EQUITY investment program of the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System (TCRS) has made a $25MM asset commitment to Canaan IX and $15MM to Bain Capital Venture Fund 2012 LP, according to a release today from the office of State Treasurer David Lillard.

Today's announcement brings to roughly $509 Million TCRS's total commitments. Commitments are paid out and subsequently invested by fund managers during ensuing years. TCRS has about $31.3 Billion in assets (a/o Sept. 30, 2011) and is authorized to allocate up to 3 percent of those assets to private equity.

In December, TCRS announced a $50MM commitment to Denham Capital Fund and a $25MM commitment for General Catalyst Group VI, as previously reported by VNC.

In a move reportedly focused on technology and healthcare, Canaan Partners announced just weeks ago the closing of its ninth fund, a $600MM entity. The firm recently said it has $3.5 Billion under management and is focused on disruptive ventures in the targeted sectors. Canaan has been an early investor in a number of high-profile firms, including Doubleclick.

Bain, of course, is the firm co-founded, previously led by and now famously associated with Republican Presidential-nomination aspirant Mitt Romney, former Governor of Massachusetts. Romney left his role at Bain, many years ago.

The Bain website is deep and broad, and has an interesting page presenting the firms' views on the U.S. healthcare sector, right here.

Today marks the first time a TCRS announcement was issued formally by the State Treasurer.

As on previous occasions, Cambridge Associates advised TRCRS regarding making the commitments announced today. The commitment announced today was, if handled as in previous instances, approved by TCRS's investment committee and administered by private-equity program director Lamar Villere.

The TCRS PE program's objective is to consistently commit $250MM-$300MM each year, but actual commitments may fall above or below that range, as warranted. As of Sept. 30, 2011, the actual allocation of TCRS assets to the PE asset class stood at 0.4 percent; the program's legislated allocation ceiling is 3 percent.

Receiving TCRS commitments since the inception of the program are (in addition to Bain, Canaan, Denham and General Catalyst): TrueBridge/TCRS-BVP VIII Special Purpose LLC (allied with Bessemer Venture Partners), VenRock, Oak Tree Opportunities Funds VIII and VIII-B; Hellman & Friedman Capital Partners VII LP; TA XI; Khosla Ventures III; and Draper Fisher Jurvetson Fund X LP.

Villere's appointment as TCRS PE director was announced three years ago, in January 2009, and the first TCRS PE commitments were announced in August of that year. The program was approved by the Tennessee General Assembly and then-Gov. Phil Bredesen, in 2008. Related prior coverage is here. VNC

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Tags: Bain Capital, Canaan Partners, David Lillard, investment, Lamar Villere, pension funds, Phil Bredesen, private equity, state government, TCRS, Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System

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