Goldman Liberty Harbor Invests Before IPO

Chidem Kurdas

A business development company run by Goldman Sachs’ $5 billion credit manager, Liberty Harbor, is doing business but the bank will not say when it will have the planned initial public offering.

It has been a while.

The BDC was organized in September 2012 and filed in March/April 2013 to go public. In the meantime it raised over half a billion dollars in private deals and has invested about $330 million of this capital in a variety of industries, ranging from internet software and services to oil, gas and telecommunications.

One legal question that hangs over the Goldman BDC is an application to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to be allowed to invest together with other entities connected to the bank.

In a new, expanded application to the regulator, the bank agrees to a long list of conditions if the SEC consents to co-investing by Goldman funds—some of which may be private equity and hedge funds. The appropriateness of an investment for each fund is to be determined independently and each board to decide whether the terms are fair and reasonable for that entity. They may refuse to participate in an investment.

But the IPO may not depend on the SEC allowing co-investing. It will take place “as soon as practicable” according to the most recent investor prospectus.

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