AEA buys into trio of female credit veterans

The 54-year-old firm has created a joint venture with a fledgling credit platform led by three experienced women in private markets.

AEA Investors, a 54-year-old mid-market firm, has bought into a women-led private credit firm to create a joint venture that will, in the firm’s own words, “leverage the power of female investment and operating talent and expertise to drive value creation and shift the gender paradigm in investing”.

Amateras Capital was established last year and is led by a trio of female private markets veterans. Alex Jung was previously a partner and head of Europe at Oak Hill Advisors and is an alumnus of Goldman Sachs and Greywolf Capital. Debbie Ackerman co-founded Chicago-based private equity firm Twin Bridge Capital Partners and Andrea Hedrick was co-founder and CEO of private credit firm Stonegate Capital. As well as making private equity and credit investments, Amateras has established a female advisory network called Project Sunflower.

AEA Investors, which began life in 1968 as a private investment vehicle for the Rockefeller, Mellon and Harriman families, will take a minority stake in the AEA-Amateras joint venture.

The announcement does not specify whether the joint venture has any hard and fast rules about its gender lens.

Jung will head up the venture, and has also been appointed head of AEA private debt and a member of the firm’s management committee, succeeding Scott Zoellner, a founding partner of AEA private debt.

Jung said: “Building on the longstanding success of the AEA platform, we see a unique opportunity to multiply the impact of Amateras and our innovative network of strategic investors that brings the female point of view to private equity and credit deals and affect change throughout the industry.”