PE Can't Catch a Break

Goldman UK’s gender pay gap problem got worse, virtually all PE assets were sold at discounts last year, women C-suite representation fell for the first time, two Trump SPAC investors pled guilty to insider trading, and Disney beat the activist pressure.

Sponsored by

Good Morning,

Goldman UK’s gender pay gap problem got worse, virtually all PE assets were sold at discounts last year, women C-suite representation fell for the first time, two Trump SPAC investors pled guilty to insider trading, and Disney beat the activist pressure.

Let’s dive in.

Before The Bell

As of 04/03/2024 market close.


  • US stocks inched higher yesterday as investors digested comments by J Pow hinting rate cuts are still not in sight

  • Gold topped $2.3k to another record high

  • Oil hit a five-month high 

  • Copper hit a thirteen-month high 

  • US dollar index is up 3.3% YTD


  • Levi’s rose ~8% on a Q1 beat-and-raise driven by a boom in D2C, with half its sales happening online (CNBC

  • What we're watching this week:  

    • Today: Lamb Weston

  • Full calendar here

Headline Roundup

  • Goldman UK gender pay gap hit a six-year high (FT)

  • 99% of PE assets were sold at discounts last year (FT)

  • Markets see terminal rate at 3.6%, higher than Fed's 2.6% estimate (FT)

  • Hedge funds rallied in Q1, with systematic L/S and tech funds up ~11% (RT)

  • ISS said Goldman should split CEO and chairman roles (RT)

  • China quant funds change strategies after regulatory clampdown (FT)

  • Bridgewater's co-CIO said dollar and gold gains are 'anomalies' (RT)

  • FINRA fined Stifel broker-dealers for recommending leveraged ETPs (FT)

  • Women representation in C-suite roles fell for the first time (S&P)

  • PIMCO sees rate cuts midyear, but gradual easing (RT)

  • Wall Street is bracing for a tax season liquidity test (RT)

  • Powell sticks with Fed's cautious rate-cut strategy (RT)

  • Google plans to charge for AI-powered search engine (FT)

  • Two Trump SPAC investors pled guilty to insider trading (BBG)

  • Steve Cohen said Point72 can save $25M by using AI (CNBC)

  • Disney won its proxy fight against activist investor Peltz (CNBC)

  • Amazon cuts hundreds of jobs in cloud-computing business (WSJ)

  • ExxonMobil expects weak oil and gas prices to hit Q1 profit (RT)

  • JPMorgan Chase launched a digital media business (RT)

A Message From The Early Bird

Are you ready to take your investing game to the next level?

We empower investors like you with a daily newsletter which includes the insights needed to stay informed and make profitable decisions in the stock market.

Join Millions Who Trust The Early Bird

  • Discover daily recommendations

  • Unlock hidden opportunities

  • Make informed investment decisions

By receiving our #1 stock tip delivered straight to your inbox every day at 6:59 am—completely FREE.

Seize the Opportunity:

Join the ranks of millions of investors who trust The Early Bird. Sign up now to receive today's #1 Trade of the Day and unlock a world of exclusive benefits.

Your success in the market is just one click away!

Deal Flow

M&A / Investments

  • Paramount Global agreed to enter exclusive merger discussions with Skydance, favoring the media company over Apollo Global’s recent $26B cash offer (WSJ

  • Abu Dhabi-based firm Lunate acquired BlackRock and KKR’s 40% stake in ADNOC's oil pipeline network, at a reportedly $4B+ valuation (BBG

  • PE firm Summit Partners is exploring a sale of men’s grooming brand Dr. Squatch at a potential $2B+ valuation (RT

  • Danish drugmaker Genmab agreed to buy US antibody cancer treatment developer ProfoundBio in a $1.8B all-cash deal (BBG)

  • State-run coal miner and power producer NLC India is planning to sell its renewables unit worth an ~$720M (BBG)

  • French manufacturer Cie. de Saint-Gobain agreed to buy Canadian metal buildings solutions firm Bailey Group of Companies for $650M in cash (BBG

  • Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur is in talks with potential investors over a stake sale (BBG

  • French asset manager AXA IM will buy PE secondary specialist W Capital (WSJ)

  • Hilton will acquire a controlling interest in hospitality firm Sydell Group (BBG)


  • Obsidian Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biotech, raised a $160.5M Series C led by Wellington Management (FN)

  • Alterome Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company specializing in precision oncology, raised a $132M Series B led by Goldman Sachs Alternatives (RT)

  • Diagonal Therapeutics, a biotech focusing on agonist antibodies, raised a $128M Series A co-led by BVF Partners and Atlas (BS)

  • 'Fintech for fintech lenders' Scayl emerged from stealth to announce a $108M equity round (EU)

  • Fintech infrastructure company Brim Financial raised an $85M Series C led by EDC Investments (BW)

  • Alsym Energy, a startup developing affordable energy storage solutions, raised a $78M Series C co-led by Tata Limited and General Catalyst (FN)

  • Torus, a firm specializing in energy storage and management products, raised a $67M round led by Origin Ventures (AX)

  • Homebase, an HR and team management app for small businesses, raised a $60M Series D led by L Catterton Growth (TC)

  • Netgain, a software provider specializing in finance / accounting solutions, raised a $35M round led by Summit Partners (FN)

  • Constantinople, a tech and operations platform for Australian banks, raised a $33M Series A led by Prosus Ventures (FN)

  • Data privacy startup Skyflow raised a $30M Series B extension led by Khosla Ventures (TC)

  • OROS Labs, a materials tech company specializing in advanced thermal insulation, raised a $22M Series B led by Airbus Ventures (FN)

  • Mission Zero, a developer of direct air capture technology, raised a $27.5M Series A from 2150, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, and more (FN)

  • Datavolo, an AI data pipeline company, raised a $21M round led by General Catalyst (FN)

  • Permiso, a threat detection firm, raised an $18M Series A led by Altimeter Capital (FN)

  • dappOS, a Singaporian intent execution network, raised a $15.3M Series A at a $300M valuation led by Polychain (FN)

  • Full Glass Wine, a startup focused on acquiring D2C wine marketplaces, raised a $14M Series A led by Shea Ventures (TC)

  • Nucleai, a spatial AI biomarker company, raised a $14M round led by M Ventures (FN)

  • Allure Security, an online brand protection-as-a-service, raised a $10M Series A led by Curql (FN)

  • NobleAI, an AI solutions provider for chemical and material informatics, raised a $10M Series A extension led by Sway Ventures (FN)

  • Aligned Marketplace, a membership-based national network of value-based advanced primary care providers, raised an $8M seed round co-led by A* Capital and Maverick Ventures (PRN)

  • Higgsfield AI, a startup democratizing social media video creation, raised an $8M seed round led by Menlo Ventures (FN)

  • TrojAI, an enterprise AI security solutions provider, raised a $5.75M seed round led by Flying Fish (PRN)

  • HD, a Thai healthcare startup creating a marketplace for third-party healthcare and surgery services, raised a $5.6M Series A led by SBI Ven Capital (TC)

  • SiftHub, an AI startup specializing in sales efficiency tools, raised a $5.5M seed round co-led by Matrix Partners India and Blume Ventures (TC)

  • Home From College, a career platform for Gen Z, raised a $5.4M seed round led by GV (TC)

  • Eirene, an online funeral services provider, has raised a $4.1M seed round led by Relay Ventures (YH)

  • Delivery Collective, a startup facilitating direct connections between merchants and customers raised a $3.8M round led by and Bling Capital (AX)

  • Hapax, an AI for the financial services industry, raised a $2.6M round led by RHS Investments (PRW)

  • Vodex, an Indian Gen AI startup, raised a $2M seed round led by Unicorn India Ventures and Pentathlon Ventures (PRN)

  • Aiorde, an AI investment analysis tool developer, raised a $1M seed round from undisclosed investors (FN)

IPO / Direct Listings / Issuances / Block Trades

  • Zeekr, the premium EV brand of Chinese automaker Geely, restarted plans to raise up to $500M in a US IPO (RT)

  • Corporate wellness start-up Gympass is preparing for a potential US IPO (FT)

  • Aerospace and defense parts manufacturer Loar filed for a US IPO (RT


  • Private credit funds are in talks to provide as much as $2.5B to finance the sale of US packaging firm Trivium Packaging by shareholders Ardagh Group and OTPP if a deal emerges (BBG

  • Apollo Global Management is in talks to offer a loan of at least $1B to finance Saks Fifth Avenue’s potential acquisition of rival Neiman Marcus (BBG

  • BC Partnerscredit arm agreed to provide $400M to football helmet maker Riddell, most of which will serve as a dividend recap to shareholders including PE firm Fenway Partners (BBG

  • Software company Thryv held discussions with private credit lenders for $350M to refinance debt (BBG

Bankruptcy / Restructuring

  • Communications technology business Casa Systems filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy with proposed deals in hand to sell its assets (WSJ

  • LATAM Airlines will start the process of re-listing shares on NYSE upon consent from creditors that supported their Chapter 11 reorganization (RT)


  • PE firm Clarion Capital closed its fourth fund at $677M for buyouts of lower-MM companies (BW

  • The asset management unit of India's Nuvama Group is targeting $480M for its Nuvama Crossover IV fund (BBG)

  • Africa-focused PE firm Adenia closed its fifth fund at $470M (FN

  • Bitkraft Ventures raised $275M for its third fund to invest in gaming studios and tech (AX

Crypto Corner

  • Ex-legal and compliance head for $4B crypto scam OneCoin was sentenced to four years for money laundering (BBG

Exec’s Picks

Litney Partners - Financial Recruiting 💼💼

If you're currently a junior investment banker looking to break into the buy side, considering lateraling to another investment bank, or have recently been impacted by widespread layoffs, it's time you check out Litney Partners, a partnership between Litquidity and Whitney Partners (the oldest purely financial services executive search and consulting firm).

We aim to place strong candidates at leading private equity, hedge fund, venture capital, growth equity, and credit funds, as well as investment banks.

To get started, simply head over to the Litney website and create your profile by dropping your resume / filling out the form:

Meme Cleanser

Join the conversation

or to participate.