Candover says tough LBO climate to persist

Private equity firm Candover Investments said a difficult climate for selling businesses is entering its second year.

“This is a good time to invest with company valuations and debt multiples back to more sensible levels. Realizations, however, will be harder to achieve,” Chairman Gerry Grimstone said in a statement this week.

As early as a year ago Grimstone said that realizations were becoming more difficult to accomplish due to jittery markets.

The London-based firm, whose largest investments include engineering conglomerate Stork and luxury yacht maker Ferretti, said net assets per share in the six months ended June 30 had stayed broadly flat on the previous six months and grew 11% over the preceeding 12-month period.

That compares with declines in the FTSE All Share Index over the same periods, Candover said.

Candover 2008 Fund held its first close in August with total commitments of $4.12 billion. —Olesya Dmitracova, Reuters