It has been a busy year of investing and hiring for the Luxemburg-based private equity house. CVC Capital Partners currently has €16bn of uninvested equity capital, making the firm one of the top five sources of available private equity funding worldwide.
It kicked off 2009 with an €11bn fund closing, which, although below the reported and revised target of €12.1bn, deserves some credit for raising such a large LBO fund during such an inhospitable time. Investors included the Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System, Pearl Holding, the University of Michigan and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.
On the investment side, CVC bought two stakes in post offices in 2009. It struck an agreement with the Danish State for its 22% shareholder stake in Post Danmark and has entered into a conditional purchase agreement with Post Danmark to acquire its entire ownership interest in De Post – La Poste, Belgium’s national postal service provider. Following the transaction, companies managed and controlled by CVC would own 49.9% of De Post – La Poste.
CVC’s other big deal was also one of the largest in 2009. Brewer Anheuser-Busch sold its Central European operations to CVC for an enterprise value of approximately US$$2.2bn, with future payment estimated to be as much as US$$800m contingent on CVC’s return on its initial investment. CVC has agreed to acquire Anheuser-Busch’s operations in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia and Slovakia.
The deal will see CVC control the operations responsible for brewing and/or distribute Stella Artois, Beck’s, Löwenbräu, Hoegaarden, Spaten and Leffe in the above countries under licence from ABI. ABI will retain rights to brew and distribute Staropramen in several countries including Ukraine, Russia, the US, Germany and the UK.
István Szoke, head of Central and Eastern Europe at CVC, said: “The acquisition marks the first investment in the region for CVC and we are delighted to acquire such a strong business with iconic brands, experienced management and dedicated employees. CVC is committed to developing the group, to be renamed StarBev, into the regional champion and will work with the local management teams and employees to achieve this goal.”
CVC also spent 2009 building its senior advisory team. CVC announced the appointment of Sir Julian Horn-Smith as senior advisor. Sir Julian will work with CVC’s telecoms, media and technology team to support CVC’s global investment advisory activities in the sector. Sir Julian has spent more than 25 years in the telecommunications sector, most recently as deputy chief executive officer and main board member of Vodafone Group. He has held a number of posts with Vodafone including group chief operating officer and was considered to be the principal architect of the firm’s international strategy. He is also a member of the board of Lloyds Banking Group and a senior advisor to UBS Investment Bank.
Sir Julian commented: “CVC is a leader amongst the global private equity firms and the depth and breadth of its knowledge combined with its clear commitment to the telecoms sector makes it very well placed for investing in this environment. I look forward to being part of CVC’s future.”
CVC also appointed Bob Jenkins and Jim Sutcliffe as senior advisors. Jenkins and Sutcliffe have become members of CVC’s global financial institutions advisory board to support CVC’s activities in the financial services sector.
Bob Jenkins was previously CEO and chairman of F&C Asset Management and prior to that spent 16 years at Citibank and five years at Credit Suisse, holding senior executive positions. Since 2007, Jenkins served as chairman of the UK Investment Management Association.
Jim Sutcliffe has spent more than 30 years in the insurance and asset management industry, most recently as group chief executive officer of Old Mutual. At Old Mutual he built a FTSE 100 company from its South African base, organically and through acquisitions in the US, Europe and Asia, with a high performance asset management business at its core. Prior to Old Mutual, Sutcliffe was deputy chairman of Liberty International and has also held a number of senior posts with Prudential including chief executive of Prudential UK.
Other offices: Amsterdam, Netherlands; Brussels, Belgium; Copenhagen, Denmark; Frankfurt, Germany; London, UK; Madrid, Spain; Paris, France; St Helier, Jersey; Stockholm, Sweden; Zurich, Switzerland; New York, US; Beijing, China; Hong Kong; Seoul, South Korea; Singapore; Sydney, Australia; Tokyo, Japan
Managing Partners: 13
Other Investment and Advisory
Assets Under Management: €34.2bn
Business: Invests in a cross-section of global industrial and service businesses which exhibit the following attributes: enterprise value of €250m to €10bn; talented, experienced and motivated management and workforce; opportunities for growth either organically or through acquisition; stable cash flows; above average returns on internally invested capital.
WHY THE FIRM WON:
• Closed a €11bn fund
• Involved in two of the most high profile deals in Europe, acquiring complete ownership of Post Danmark and the Central European operations of brewer Anheuser-Busch
• Recruited deputy CEO of Vodafone as a senior adviser to its TMT team
CVC Capital Partners
Anacap Financial Partners
Silverfleet Capital Partners