A growing asset class: The US private debt market

August 26, 2021

A growing asset class: The US private debt market

August 2021 | UMB 

The private debt market has come into its own over the past decade. Once a small and obscure asset class, its profile was raised in the aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis. Traditional lenders shied away from financing smaller, private market transactions, leaving a large gap in funding for the private equity market, especially in the middle market and below. Private debt firms filled the void. According to PitchBook, only 1,530 private debt transactions were made in 2010, a number that would rise to almost 5,000 transactions by 2018. Likewise, the value of those 2010 deals amounted to only $70.3 billion. Six years later, the aggregate value of private debt transactions ballooned to $316.5 billion, a more than fourfold increase.

This report, made in conjunction with PitchBook Data, aims to highlight the private debt market through multiple lenses, including fundraising, fund sizes, fund types, and geographical distribution. It also includes a spotlight on venture debt, which became a valuable tool for startups during the pandemic.

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