Updated: Feb 3, 2021
Silver Lake is starting 2021 in record-breaking fashion.
The tech investor has raised $20 billion for its sixth flagship fund, the largest-ever tech-focused vehicle from a PE firm, according to PitchBook data, surpassing a $17.8 billion effort from Thoma Bravo that closed last year. Silver Lake's previous namesake fund closed on $15 billion in 2017, while Vista Equity Partners, another of the industry's most prominent tech investors, raised a $16 billion vehicle in 2019.
During the early days of the pandemic, Silver Lake made a series of minority investments in teetering tech companies that are already beginning to pay off. Last March, the Menlo Park, Calif.-based firm invested $1 billion in Twitter, and in April it teamed up with Sixth Street Partners to make a $1 billion investment in Airbnb at an $18 billion valuation. The firm also joined Apollo Global Management to make a $1.2 billion investment in Expedia in April.
Today, Airbnb has a market cap of more than $100 billion. Twitter stock is up more than 40% from the time of Silver Lake's investment, and Expedia shares have more than doubled.
Silver Lake also made notable minority investments last year in Reliance Retail, Jio Platforms, Klarna, Waymo and others. In September, meanwhile, the firm received $2 billion from Mubadala for a new long-term investment strategy that will have a 25-year deployment lifecycle.