When it comes to investments, entrepreneurs often consider private equity investors. Private equity is a type of investment that businesses and institutions make to help run private businesses.

Private equity firms are in charge of the money. This money improves the company’s finances and helps the business grow. But how do these investments and firms exactly help the companies? Read this article to learn more about private equity firms, investments, and structure.

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Private Equity

Private equity is a type of private investment. It is a way to put money into companies that do not trade on a public exchange.

Private Equity Investment

An investment is when an individual, business, or group puts money into a private company.

There are two main places where the money comes from to invest in private equity:

  • Private investors or “accredited investors”: Most are wealthy people who put their money into firms.
  • Institutional investors: They are big businesses that put a lot of money into private equity, such as large banks or insurance companies.

Major Players in a Private Equity Investment

The following are the main players in a typical investment:

  • The target company that is seeking funding,
  • The debt sponsor, who operates the funds, and 
  • A private equity firm is a company that puts together groups of investors and their funds.

Private Equity Firm (PE Firm)

A private equity firm is a business that brings together money from different investors to buy shares in private companies. The goal of reorganising these companies is to make them more productive and profitable so that their investors can make money.

These companies buy shares in private companies with the hope that they will grow and make money within a certain amount of time. Also, sometimes these firms buy whole businesses and change their structure.

In this sense, private equity companies invest in and take over companies that haven’t been able to get money on their own. They run them and sell shares of the company back to the public.

Private Equity Firm Structure

The structure of private equity firms is as follows:

  •  The general partner (GP): The GP is in charge of making investments and getting money from institutional investors, i.e., the limited partners to do so. General partners are liable for any losses that may occur.
  • The limited partners (LP): The limited partners’ (LPs) job is to invest money, and their liability is limited to the amount of money they invest. In a legal document called a Limited Partnership Agreement, all parties lay out the terms of their partnership (LPA).

Do’s Before the Investment

Investment firms often use valuation techniques to figure out how much a company is worth.

  • Comparable companies’ valuation: Figuring out the value of the target company by finding out the value of similar companies in the same industry.
  • Precedent Transaction Analysis: For this analysis, the firm will look at past deals made by companies in the same industry that were about the same size.
  • Discounted Cash Flow valuation: In this way, you find out if the future cash flows of an investment will be worth more than its current value.

If the private equity investment works out, the new owners will work with the current management to make plans for how the target company will run in the future.

Financial Activities of a PE Firms

Investors profit in various ways from these firms.

  •  Buyouts: Private equity funds are increasingly investing in private companies to get long-term returns. This can also include buyouts of public companies that lead to their removal from the stock market. When a firm does a buyout, it uses the company’s assets to get loans. So, the firm uses the company’s assets as security to get money to invest in the same company.
  • Venture capital is when firms invest money in a new business that is just starting up. After a successful investment, the management company will usually try to cut costs.

What do PE Firms Offer?

PE firms help the community and businesses in many ways. Among these are: 

  • Giving businesses an alternative way to raise money
  • Helping private companies go public. This is done through initial public offerings (IPOs), private companies sell shares to the public and become public companies as a suitable way to grow the business.
  • Giving investors access to larger classes of investments, which can increase their returns. It allows them to take part in larger investment classes.
  • Providing businesses and clients a wide range of tools for service. These services include tax, legal, and financial expertise.

Private Equity Financing

Investors loan firms private equity to avoid bankruptcy. It tries to help businesses grow and achieve their goals without putting too much stress on them to pay back their loans.

Most of the time, the average annual return on PE funds is somewhere between moderate returns in the medium term and high returns in the long term.

Start-up Firms

Start-up funds use money from

  • Friends and family – Here, they make use of personal savings and donations from acquaintances.
  • Angel investors – These are people who put their money into new small businesses and hope to get a better return than with traditional investments.
  • Venture capitalists -Put money into high-risk businesses like start-ups in exchange for a share of the company’s ownership.

    Though it is worth noting, there are some advantages and disadvantages to these funding sources.


Private equity is a type of investment that people, businesses, and institutions make to help private companies run well. These firms are investment companies that usually buy companies. They usually invest in small and medium-sized businesses. In this way, investors can make money over a long period.

About the author

EWOR is a place where the most extraordinary people find the education, network, and capital to solve the world's biggest problems. Our unique combination of an entrepreneurship academy and early-stage VC (up to €150K investment) firm was built for founders by founders, creating an unparalleled community for like-minded entrepreneurs and over a dozen unicorn founders who are building impactful tech companies.