April 2006 issue

News analysis

Editor’s Note

PE: too big to ignore

In March Ernst & Young announced Simon Perry as its first global private equity leader, something the firm described as “a new role demonstrating Ernst & Young’s commitment to the industry.” While Perry will obviously act as the external face of the firm’s private equity focused business lines, he describes his role inside the firm as: “being an advocate to how important private equity is to us as a business and making sure that we get the high quality people allocation that this demands.”

Escaping the glare

The comments period over the SEC’s proposals to relax its deregistration rules for foreign companies has recently closed. With more and more companies turning their backs on the US markets, Tom Allchorne looks at what the SEC wants to do, and how Europeans have greeted this.

Care services: sustaining value

Private equity houses continue to make the most of opportunities in the care services sector, in particular outsourced services for the elderly, disabled and those with special needs being subsidised by the public sector via contract agreements. Valuations appear to be soaring, but how long will private equity houses be able to extract value from these deals? Angela Sormani reports.

Company law reform may threaten NEDs

Draft new rules on directors’ duties could make it difficult for non-executive directors (NEDs) to work with more than one company at the same time. Under the proposed new rules, which are currently being debated by Parliament, a director would have to avoid ‘a situation in which he has, or can have, a direct or indirect interest that conflicts, or possibly may conflict, with the interests of the company.’ Angela Sormani reports.

News highlights

A new face in Central European mezzanine

Monument opens in London

PE turns attention to corporates

Inefficient debt pricing helping PE sponsors

TVM changes name

3i backs Israeli fund

Private equity eyes healthcare real estate

UBS reduces PE exposure

Partners Group lists on SWX

UK Budget: no surprises for PE

UK Budget reduces VCT tax breaks

Seed through early stage

Venture Index secures sponsor

SCIpharm 2006

BBAA news

1st ECF out of the gates

Cambridge Consultants back in venture game

Fund news

Lead story

HgCapital smashes target

Mid-market specialist HgCapital overshot its target for its latest fund by £200m. Tom Allchorne examines the fund and looks at how it was raised in an already crowded marketplace.

Quick view

Altor breaks €1bn barrier for new fund

Russian fund to launch on AIM

HgCapital raises £950m

Quartilium FoFs final close

SVG raises second CFO

European Capital raises €400m

First close for Alfa

Rutland to raise £250m

Phoenix raises £375m fund

Vertex raises fund III

BoS backs Mono

Carlyle in property JV

Amanda Capital turns East

Nordic Capital raises €1.9bn

Apax launches new fund on Euronext

Global Finance raises €197m

Israeli fund raising hits 4-year high

Synergo closes fund

SVG funds Permira IV

Exit news

Lead story

Letts Filofax goes to Phoenix

When Dunedin Capital Partners sealed a deal to acquire the Letts diary business in 2000, the firm already had its eyes on the Filofax brand recognising that consolidating the Letts and Filofax brands would bring attractive synergies. The prediction was correct and Dunedin is now reaping the benefits of a lucrative exit to Phoenix Equity Partners, which hopes to extract further value from the business. Angela Sormani reports.

Quick view


3i sells Epcon stake

Legrand to float

MGPA sells interest in Banimmo

Arena sold in secondary buyout

Electra sells Gardiner

3i more than doubles return on UTT sale

AGI completes dual IPO

Apax sells ALAIN AFFLELOU stake

Barclays sells RSG

Somerfield checks out of Kwik Save

Interregnum to sell portfolio

Stirling Square backs Whittan Storage Systems secondary

DKW sells Kleinwort Capital interest

Partial exit for Prize Food consortium

Warburg sells RBMH

Innova sells AMG.net

Nordic Capital sells Guide

Barclays PE buys TUJA

August makes 6x on Durrants secondary

European IPOs raise more than €50bn

Imperial sells ParOS

CapMan and Sitra exit

PONTIS and Capexit realise UC4

Apax and Permira complete Inmarsat exit

Bridgepoint sells Hydrex

Dunedin sells Celtic Inns

ECM sells Sport Group to IK


Record fund raising year for France

Euro 2005 performance and investment data


Quick view

AXA reshuffle

Granville name change

Thompson quits

CC appts

3i move

NIBCapital name change

Cipio promotes

Monument appts

LDC recruits

Deloitte appts

Paisner joins Altius

Duke Street adds

SJ Berwin move

Mackie joins KCT

Baker Tilly appts

PwC adds

Capital Dynamics opens SF office

Olisa steps down

Pomona appts

Cobbetts poaches

Mezz Management hires

TVM name change

Duke Street promotes

Palamon move

E&Y new role

Rainmaker award

CIL appts

Hunton & Williams

UHY appts


Helping hands

Transaction support services at the large accountancy firms have been evolving in recent years to meet the needs of private equity clients and the big four say transaction support is increasingly geared to finding ways of adding value to deals. But some in the private equity industry are wary that bundling in extra services can mean higher fees than initially anticipated. Patrick McCurry reports.

China: Full of eastern promise

By Anthony O’Connor

Biotech special report

Hitting the fund raising trail

In the life science space it’s becoming increasingly clear that funds today need to differentiate themselves, be this by creating pure play funds or offering something different. Tom Allchorne looks at what the VCs are up to and whether LPs are really interested.

Biotech venture spend: who are the beneficiaries?

Europe’s biotech venture market seems to have recovered from its low point in 2002, but the wall of money targeted at this space appears to be moving later in stage year-on-year. Most biotech venture funds, under pressure from their LPs to generate returns so they can raise their next fund, are looking to expansion stage because it’s a quicker and more profitable route to exit. Angela Sormani takes a look at where biotech venture spend is ending up.

LP Talking Head

Taking a view: Peter Cochrane

LP Corner

PE is waking up to IR

The job of investor relations professional in private equity terms is relatively new, although the role itself has been there from the start. The rise of the investor relations professional is partly driven by the changed and changing nature of today’s private equity fundraising market and the private equity investor community but also by the more general fact that the private equity asset class is maturing. Mostly the evolution is seen as positive on the part of limited partner investors. Lisa Bushrod reports.

Legal & Regulatory

EU merger rules still taking shape

After 14 years of on-off discussion surrounding the issue of a common EU wide takeover code that only got off the buffers post its grounding in 2001 once member states agreed they could opt out of the most contentious clauses, implementation is around the corner. Having agreed to the Directive in principle early last year, May 20 this year is the implementation date for the EU Takeover Directive, although some member states are farther ahead than others in implementing the directive into their national laws and so a full picture of which states will opt in or out is unlikely to emerge before the end of this year. Lisa Bushrod reports.

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