Sanjeev K. Mehra, a founding member of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s private equity group, is seeking more than $750 million for a new buyout firm, according to people with knowledge of the plan.
Mehra, 59, recently founded Periphas Capital and hired John Bowman, an ex-Goldman colleague, and Jeffrey Dodge, the former head of business development for Berkshire Partners LLC, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing the new firm because it hasn’t been announced publicly. The firm will focus on “growth and buy-out investments in middle-market companies,” according to Dodge’s LinkedIn profile.
Mehra ultimately may raise more than $1 billion, one of the people said. He helped start Goldman’s private equity practice in 1990 and was co-head of the Americas private equity business before stepping down from his job as vice chairman of the global private equity unit in 2016. Mehra worked on some of the biggest deals in the leveraged-buyout era, including the $7 billion take-private of business-services giant Aramark in 2007.
The introduction of the Volcker Rule made it harder for banks including Goldman Sachs to be major private equity players, because it limited the firms’ ability to put their own capital to work in the buyout funds. Gerry Cardinale, Hugues Lepic and Muneer Satter — three of the most senior employees at Goldman’s merchant bank — departed in 2012. A year later, it lost Henry Cornell, one of the architects of the business. All four now run their own firms.
Mehra started at New York-based Goldman Sachs in 1986 in the corporate finance division and became partner, the highest rank, in 1998. He also has served on the boards of Aramark, Sigma Electro Systems, Tvs Logistics Services Ltd. and Neovia Logistics Services.