Best Private Equity Firms in Chicago

Are you looking for a private equity firm in Chicago? Do you want to know everything about the best private equity firms in Chicago? Then don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place.

Private equity is a type of investment far from the public market, in which funds and investors invest directly in companies or participate in their acquisitions. Private investments can take various forms, from the complex forms of trading used to capital arbitrage. High-net-worth investors and individuals usually make these investments.

In this article, we will list the best private equity firms in Chicago, which have proved to be the real titans of finance.

Also Read: Fashion Designers in Chicago

We Analyzed 1185 Private Equity Firms in Chicago, Illinois, and Picked the Top 11

Adam Street Partners

Adam Street Partners is a private equity firm established in 1972 by T. Bondurant French and George Spencer. The firm is located in Chicago, Illinois, where it engages in growth equity, private credit, primary investments, and co-investments. Adam Street Partners has managed a portfolio of over 451 direct investment companies. It now has $45 billion total assets under management. Adams Street Partners has raised a total of $5.7 billion in nine funds, the latest being the Adams Street 2019 Partnership Fund. The fund was announced on December 20, 2019, and has raised $740 million. Their most recent investment was on August 10, 2021, when Reify Health raised $ 220 million. They have developed a strategy where a structured and clear risk management process helps them invest effectively.

Arbor Investment

Arbor Investments started in 1999 and is located in Chicago, Illinois. The investment company focuses on middle-market consumer food and beverages for entrepreneurial agriculture companies across North America. With 37 employees, the firm has been able to manage $3.2 billion in total assets. In October 2020, Arbor closed its fifth equity fund on $1.5 Billion and another separate captive subordinated debt fund on $168 million. Arbor has invested in more than 80 portfolio companies since it began. In 2021, Private Equity International(PEI) ranked Arbor Investment 219th in the world. Arbor’s success in raising funds for these oversubscribed mid-market funds reflects a broader trend toward investing in the food industry and could be an investor indicator. Investment favors early-stage companies.

Arch Venture Partners

The firm was founded in 1986 by Robert Nelsen and Steven Lazarus. It is located in Chicago, where it primarily focuses on venture financing of technology companies, life sciences, physical sciences, and communication services. The company has skilled professionals who have raised funds worth $4.2 billion, covering 11 funds. The firm has invested in 387 companies and with over 100 portfolio companies. They have the unique ability to analyze and choose entrepreneurial companies, fund them then make them successful and strong firms. Their most recent investment was on August 4, 2021, when Sonoma BioTherapeutics raised $265 million.

BDT Capital Partners

BDT Capital Partners was founded in 2009 by Byron Trot. The firm focuses on growth investing and leveraged buyouts for entrepreneurial businesses and family-owned companies. It is headquartered in Chicago and holds offices around the world. The firm has raised over $18 billion from investment funds and manages $27.8 billion in total assets. BDT Capital Partners is ranked 38th best private equity firm in the world according to a Private Equity International(PEI) report. The investment firm analyzes its business, competition, debt structure, history, and key macroeconomic trends; this is true whether the investment is an initial public offering, development capital, leveraged buyouts, or complex refinancing. They are truly unique in taking real risks to overcome great challenges.

GCM Grosvenor

GCM Grosvenor was founded in 1971. It is headquartered in Chicago and has over 500 employees worldwide. The firm has $64.9 billion in assets under management. GCM Grosvenor is well known because it provides alternative management for different portfolio companies. It invests across private equity, real estate, and infrastructure. The professionals working for the firm use different strategies to implement their services. In November 2020, GCM raised $195 million on post-IPO equity. GCM Grosvenor got an A+ rating from PRI in 2020 for a holistic approach to ESG methodology and administration and an A+ rating for ESG blending in manager selection, monitoring, and approval.

Growth Catalyst Partners

GCP was founded in 2017 by Jim TenBroek and Scott Peters. It is headquartered in Chicago with an office in Rowayton, CT. GCP is a middle-market private equity firm focused on building high-growth marketing, information, and tech-enabled services businesses through a buy and build strategy. The firm has acquired over 50 private companies across its ten platform companies and has deployed over $250 million of equity across the portfolio. GCP has an extensive executive network in its sectors and sources most of its acquisitions on a proprietary basis. GCP’s LPs include prominent institutional investors, family offices, and a deep pool of leading industry executives. GCP is currently investing out of GCP Fund II.


GTCR LLC is a private equity partner located in Chicago, IL. The firm mainly focuses on growth capital, leveraged buyouts, and rollup dealings. With over $24.2 billion total assets under management, GTCR LLC invests in industries related to technology, healthcare, and financial services for high-growth industries. Since it was founded, it has made 17 investments, six exits, and has acquired 33 organizations. The most recent company acquisition was Well Fargo Management on February 23, 2021. The company cost was $2.1 billion. The firm is ranked 44th best private company worldwide by PEI.

Madison Dearborn Partner

Madison Dearborn Partner(MDP) focuses on leveraged buyouts for family-owned businesses and large companies. The firm’s history in Chicago dates back to the early 1980s when its founders built a venture capital portfolio and acquired $ 2.6 billion in management rights from First Chicago Venture Capital. Since the founders established MDP as an independent company in 1992, the company has raised eight funds totaling approximately $ 28 billion and made investments in more than 150 companies. The firm’s funds have produced strong performance across several economic cycles, capital markets, and industries.

The Vistria Group

This firm is based in Chicago. It was founded in 2013, and it primarily focuses on strategic restructuring, buyouts, and growth investing. The company prefers to make investments in sectors such as healthcare, education, and financial services. Vistria manages $2.7 billion of total assets and has invested in 22 portfolio companies. Vistria currently manages more than $6.5 billion in institutional capital through its funds and co-investment vehicles. Fund IV was significantly oversubscribed, closing at a hard cap and beating its $1.5 billion targets. It includes a $180 million commitment from Vistria executives and operating partners.

Valor Equity Partners

Valor Equity Partner was started in 1995 by Antonio Gracias. The company engages in buyouts and growth investing for high-growth firms across several stages of development. The firm has been able to raise $3.2 billion from 3 funds. Valor was ranked 127 worldwide by the PEI 300 report. It has made 107 investments and 14 diversity investments and also offered investment services to 61 portfolio companies. In the last 12 months,Valor has participated in dealings totaling $2.8 billion. Major investments have included Tesla Motors, SpaceX, Reddit, Starbucks, Quora, and others.

Wind Point Partners

Founded in 1984, the firm specializes in leveraged buyouts and growth capital investments for mid-market companies. It manages assets valued at over $5 billion in commitments. Wind Point has several sectors which include; business services, consumer goods, and industrial products. It has been ranked 192 worldwide according to the statistics given by PEI. It has adopted a strategy where the firm hires executives who will partner in selecting and acquiring a company where they can develop and carry out a strategic value creation plan.

Syed Farhan Raza

Farhan is the managing director at Vverge. He also runs a boutique SEO agency helping local businesses drive organic traffic that converts. He spoke at 20+ conferences including Google Business Group and contributed to many top publications like Yahoo. When he is not working 12 hours a day and 6 days a week helping companies grow, you can find him bouncing ideas with fellow entrepreneurs in a local cafe or over a phone call.

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