Ridgewood Energy Corp., which has put together funding for deepwater Gulf of Mexico (GOM) projects for the last couple of years, on Tuesday said it had completed a private equity fund for $1.9 billion, more than it raised early last year when commodity prices were higher.

The private upstream investor closed Ridgewood Energy Oil & Gas Fund III LP (Fund III) for $1.9 billion, exceeding a $1.5 billion target, that is to be used for deepwater development. In early 2014, $1.1 billion in commitments was put together in Fund II that also targets deepwater exploration (see Daily GPI, Jan. 13, 2014).

“Fund III is a continuation of Ridgewood Energy’s investment program focused on finding and developing oil in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico for $20/bbl or less,” management said. The fund’s commitments were sourced from institutional investors, including state and corporate pension plans, university endowments and foundations, as well as a number of private wealth managers/family offices.

“Our limited partners continue to recognize the outperformance potential of Ridgewood Energy’s deepwater Gulf of Mexico oil strategy, where we have the ability to find and develop significant oil reserves for a very low cost per barrel,” COO Kenny Lang said. “Our disciplined approach allows us to deliver strong returns across a range of oil price environments, and recent dislocation in the sector has created even more compelling opportunities for investment.”

Ridgewood also manages capital and commitments for investment in the deepwater GOM on behalf of Riverstone Holdings LLC. In early 2013 the partners invested more than $550 million in a series of GOM exploration projects (see Daily GPI, March 6, 2013). They first partnered in 2010 and since then have participated in at least four discoveries in the Mississippi Canyon and Ewing Bank blocks.

Among their investments is the Dantzler project, operated by Noble Energy Inc. (see Daily GPI, June 8).