Ex-Axa buyout unit raises cash

Michael Bow
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ARDIAN, the private equity unit spun out of investment giant AXA, has raised €500m (£413m) to invest in small businesses across Europe.

The fundraising comprises €450m through a traditional buyout fund – the third fund raised through its Expansion brand – and a €50m pot from investors for direct co-investments.

It follows on from Expansion fund II, which raised €353m. Fund III has already spent 23 per cent of its cash on four investments.