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The term private equity manager is a rather generic title given to several positions within the field. Most commonly, it is used to describe the overseeing of a fund established to buy private equity investments. In some cases, this entails choosing which assets to acquire. In other circumstances, this is maintaining the financial records for established purchases. The responsibilities of a private equity manager vary widely between and sometimes even within an organization.
One of the most common types of private equity manager is the portfolio manager. In essence, this job is about locating promising investments. These individuals watch market trends carefully and have often become quite adept at locating businesses and real estate with the potential for financial growth. While these managers may occasionally do in-depth research into a particular investment, their focus generally involves larger trends.
Often, a potential investment requires further analysis before purchase. The individual responsible for ensuring the financial stability of these investments is often referred to as a private equity manager of due diligence. This position may involve the ferreting out of issues associated with organizations that are not widely known to the public. In cases involving distressed investments, a due diligence manager can provide suggestions vital in restructure planning.
A private equity manager of fund operations is generally concerned with the financial backers of an equity fund. This job primarily entails compiling financial information about the fund and providing this information to investors. Managers of fund operations may also be responsible for overseeing the budget and establishing general rules governing the daily operations of the fund.
In larger private equity funds, managers may be broken down by areas of investment. For example, a real estate portfolio manager concentrates solely on property acquisitions. Private equity managers may specialize in venture capital, growth capital, or even financial opportunities involving public infrastructure.
In some cases, it is not the manager that is specialized but the equity fund itself. Funds are sometimes established with very specific investments in mind. These funds may focus on venture capital investments for new business in underdeveloped markets. These are often small funds managed by small teams.
Managers of specialized or small, independent funds can carry the title of private equity manager. They are essentially jacks-of-all-trades, overseeing all aspects of the funds' operations. Only in very rare circumstances do these managers work without a team, as the complexity of private equity funds generally prohibits individual operation.