Sunstone Partners Closes $300 Million Fund

PALO ALTO, CA, APRIL 28, 2016 – Sunstone Partners, a newly formed growth equity firm, today announced the closing of its first fund, Sunstone Partners I, L.P., with $300 million of total commitments. The fund initially targeted $200 million, was significantly oversubscribed, and reached its hard cap without using a placement agent. The new fund’s investors include university endowments, corporate pension plans, foundations, insurance companies, investment advisors, state and government retirement systems and family offices.

Sunstone Partners is a spin-out of the growth equity team of Trident Capital, a multi-stage investment firm with seven funds and $1.9 billion of capital under management since 1993. Sunstone Partners was initially known as TC Growth Partners. Recent liquidity events for the Sunstone team include the initial public offering of Teladoc (NYSE: TDOC) and several successful M&A transactions: Acclaris (acquired by Towers Watson), Prolexic (acquired by Akamai), Fruition Partners (acquired by CSC) and Voltage Security (acquired by HP).

The senior leadership team consists of co-founders Gustavo Alberelli, Michael Biggee, John Moragne and Arneek Multani. The four co-founders have over 60 years of cumulative investment experience, most of which have been working together at Trident, and have together led 46 individual investments.

At Sunstone Partners, the team will continue to lead growth equity investments and majority recapitalizations/buyouts in technology-enabled services businesses with a history of capital efficiency. The firm will focus on four core industry sectors – Healthcare IT, Internet and Marketing Services, Cloud and Enterprise IT, and Cybersecurity. Equity investments will range from $15 to $75 million per portfolio company. Target companies will have the following financial criteria:

  • Annual revenue of at least $10 million;
  • Revenue growth greater than 20% per year; and
  • Breakeven or profitable.

In 2015, the firm closed its first investment, a $34 million financing of UserZoom Technologies, the leading user experience research and testing software-as-a-service platform.

Arneek Multani and Gustavo Alberelli stated, “We are humbled by the strong market validation of our strategy and grateful to our limited partner investors for demonstrating their confidence in us. Our team looks forward to building upon our new Sunstone Partners platform.”

To help founders and management teams drive their companies forward, Sunstone Partners offers substantial expertise in operational best practices and a team of experienced operating executives to provide hands-on guidance. Leading the portfolio operations team is managing director of portfolio operations, John Reardon, as well as operating partners Jeff Rich and Scott Hammack.

John Moragne and Michael Biggee stated, “We spun out to build a new firm focused exclusively on growth stage investing, dedicated to a simple strategy: to partner with founders and management teams and dramatically increase the value of their companies by recruiting top notch talent, implementing best in class infrastructure and accelerating sales growth.”

About Sunstone Partners

Sunstone Partners is a new growth equity firm focused on technology-enabled services companies. The firm is a spin-out of the growth equity team of Trident Capital, a multi-stage investment firm with seven funds and $1.9 billion of capital under management since 1993. Sunstone Partners makes growth equity and growth buyout investments in companies that have annual revenue of at least $10 million, are growing at greater than 20% per year and are profitable. We invest in both sizable minority positions and control transactions.