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The Chickasaw Nation announced the establishment of Pennington Creek Capital, a private capital investment firm set to open an office in Dallas, Texas. 

The new firm, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ada, Okla.-based Sovereign Native Holdco LLC, is part of the tribe’s strategy of investing in promising middle-market companies led by ambitious founders and visionary entrepreneurs with high potential for growth, cashflow, and a strong market position.

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Dan Boren, secretary of commerce for the Chickasaw Nation, will serve as chairman of Pennington Creek Capital, which will be led by Curt Croffod, former managing director at Hicks Equity Partners in Dallas. At Hicks, Crofford invested in middle-market companies ranging in value from $30 million to $500 million in the specialty manufacturing, commercial aerospace and defense, food and beverage, software, oil and gas, and distribution sectors.

"Curt’s notable success in identifying and leading significant investments will bring a fresh perspective and energy to our firm,” Boren said in a statement. “We are excited to have him on board and look forward to what lies ahead.”

The new venture represents the tribe's second foray into private equity over the past year.

In mid-2023, Chickasaw Nation made an anchor investment in New York City-based Good Springs Capital, a new private investment firm that targets middle-market platform companies with entrepreneurial management teams in the industrial and services sectors. 

Good Springs Capital, which gets its name from the natural springs on the Chickasaw Nation, was started by the team that founded and built Alleghany Capital, the private investment arm of Alleghany Corporation. From its inception in 2013, Alleghany Capital grew into a portfolio of eight platform companies generating revenue of nearly $5 billion in 2022.

“Through selective investments in established enterprises with solid leadership and strong values, Sovereign Native Holdco has driven economic expansion and growth for companies while generating returns we can use to deliver quality programs and services for the betterment and advancement of our citizens and the communities we serve,” Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby said in a statement. 

The latest private equity investments are part of the tribe’s broad investment portfolio with venture capital and private investments in several industries including energy, healthcare, technology, real estate and other sectors.  

Last fall, the tribe also received funding through the State Small Business Credit Initiative that included $8 million to make limited partner investments in venture capital funds focused on seed and early-stage businesses.