Washington State Investment Board slates $950 million for 4 managers

The $116.5 billion Washington State Investment Board, Olympia, on Thursday approved commitments of up to $950 million to four private equity funds, confirmed spokesman Chris Phillips in an email.

The board committed $300 million to Arable Capital Partners, a new venture targeting investments in existing operating businesses in the agriculture industry. The WSIB will be the sole source of outside funding for Arable's first investment vehicle.

The board also committed up to $250 million to Abraaj Private Equity Fund VI, managed by Abraaj Investment Management. The fund will focus on midcap and larger transactions in emerging and frontier markets. It has a target and hard cap of $6 billion.

Another $200 million was committed to Tailwind Capital Partners III, a growth-oriented, middle-market private equity fund, with a target size of $1 billion and hard cap of $1.5 billion.

Also, a commitment of $200 million was made to Vestar Capital Partners VII. The fund, which has a $1 billion target size and a $1.25 billion hard-cap, is a lower-middle-market buyout and growth equity fund. It will focus on investing in North American companies operating in consumer, health care, business services, and industrial products.