Private equity funds face disclosure threat

Author: | Published: 1 Apr 2005

Private equity groups face having details of their holdings disclosed under the UK's freedom of information laws.

The Freedom of Information Act, which came into force on January 1 2005, requires public sector bodies to reveal the value of private companies in which they invest. With public authorities, pension funds and government bodies increasingly investing in, or co-investing with, private equity funds, the rules could have a knock-on effect on the industry.

The Act empowers any organization or member of the public to request to see information held by, or on behalf of, a UK public authority. "The rules are retrospective in effect and the definition of public authority is very wide - over 100,000 UK organizations will be subject to the Act," says Simon Witney of SJ Berwin. The...