The fund is still very much in the planning stages. But Stoesser said the firm would likely try to raise around €750 million to €1 billion ($1 billion to $1.3 billion). The firm is in talks with placement agents and other fundraising intermediaries, he said, and will make a final decision on whether to raise the fund next year.
Despite the European sovereign debt crisis rattling global markets, Stoesser said there is still appetite among limited partners for firms that buy European companies with global businesses. About 50 percent of Arle Capital’s existing investors are based in the United States, he said. They include the
“When you talk with investors about the quality companies in Europe who export to the United States, Asia and elsewhere there’s still a keen desire to take European exposure,” he said.
The fundraising plans are coalescing as Arle Capital, which has 12 investment professionals, has been ramping up its exit activity.
On Nov. 29, the firm announced it agreed to sell Capital Safety to
Meanwhile, Arle Capital is in the process of selling Qioptic, a Luxembourg-based manufacturer of optical components and modules for military and commercial uses. Stoesser declined to discuss the process, which is being run by Credit Suisse and Rothschild, other than to say that a “handful” of potential buyers—including U.S.-based private equity firms—are looking at the company. He also said Qioptic is expected to generate $400 million in revenue this year; the company could be valued at up to $800 million, according to reports.
Late last year, the firm sold Ontex, a Belgian diaper manufacturer that struggled amid heightened competition and debt, generating a 0.75x return, and earlier this year it sold Equity Trust, an Amsterdam-based financial advisory group, to
Arle Capital seeks to buy businesses in the energy, industrial and services sectors based in Europe but with global operations. The firm has some capital left from its previous fund, the Candover 2008 Fund, but it can only use it to support existing investments.