AE Industrial Partners unveils its third investment fund / Maximusnd

Fund III has already seen around one-fourth of its $1.28 billion size deployed into new platform acquisitions and add-ons.

AE Industrial Partners, one of the government market's most active private equity firms, has closed its third flagship fund at $1.28 billion in capital commitments from new and existing investors.

National security, aerospace and industrial services are among the firm's core markets with midsized businesses as the main targets for investments.

Fund III has already seen around one-fourth of it deployed into five initial platform acquisitions and three add-on transactions, AEI said Tuesday.

Some examples of AEI portfolio companies include the small satellite maker York Space Systems, cyber technology company RedLattice and space launch vehicle provider Firefly Aerospace.

Back in the fall, AEI partner Kirk Konert was a guest on our WT 360 podcast to discuss the firm's approach to investing and his observations on what makes for a successful endeavor.

Through Fund III, AEI will make control investments through what it calls critical “toll gates” across the aerospace and defense supply chains. The firm will also back industry suppliers in their work to scale up production amid ongoing and increased demand from customers in their respective end markets.

AEI closed its second fund in 2018 at $1.36 billion in equity commitments, while the debut fund unveiled in 2016 fetched $680 million.

Fund III's investor base includes endowments, charitable foundations, public and corporate pensions, financial institutions, funds of funds, family offices, and sovereign wealth funds.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal adviser to AEI for the Fund III close.