Three to watch


NEW YORK (Fortune) -- J.C. Flowers: Founder J. Christopher Flowers, formerly of Goldman Sachs (Charts), built his reputation on bank deals - notably the 2000 takeover of Shinsei Bank, a deal he did with Ripplewood Holdings' Tim Collins. The two turned the company around for a profit of more than $1 billion.

Next up for Flowers? German public bank HSH Nordbank, in which his firm acquired a $1.6 billion stake last year.

Silver Lake Partners: Even when Silver Lake was still unknown, marquee names like Larry Ellison, Bill Gates, and Michael Dell were investing in the firm. The reason? The principals know Silicon Valley and deal making. New York City-based co-founder Glenn Hutchins did time at Blackstone and Thomas h. Lee and is a member of the Council on Foreign relations. Co-founder David Roux, who works out of Menlo Park, was an executive at Oracle (Charts).

The firm pioneered and focuses on tech deals and boasts names like Flextronics (Charts) andNasdaq (Charts) in its portfolio. Now sources close to Silver Lake say it will raise $10 billion for the largest tech buyout fund ever.

Summit Partners: Founded in 1984 as a firm focused on late-stage venture capital, Summit has evolved into a well-respected private-equity player that aims at growth companies. It gets its buyout ideas the old-fashioned way: from cold calling CEOs. Offices in Boston, Palo Alto, and London target companies in many categories, including health care, energy, and financial services. Top of page