July/August 2004 issue

News analysis

Banks gain ground in book debt battle

Corporate governance: liability concerns

Operating partners: a growing breed


BNP Paribas reduces stakes in private equity houses

ABN AMRO Capital quits German market

Strathdon merges with Invesco

UK takeover rule changes: minimal impact

VCs feature in Sunday Times rich list

Daems of GIMV new EVCA chair

AMJPE brokering own MBO?

Maples buys Gartmore Jersey Fund business

Capiton reveals mezzanine intentions

Credit Agricole to sell to AXA PE

Euronext to launch junior market

Italy launches Mercato Expandi

State Street acquires Fondamenta

Opera and Bear Stearns strategic agreement

Electra faces Scholz & Friends minority shareholder revolt

Lagardère gets all clear over Editis

D&T Trans Svcs to KPMG

SYIF & YABA join forces

Fund news

Gamma Capital closes on second fund

SES Iberian Fund I launches

Early-stage tech fund handed £3m boost

First close for German PE fund

UniCredit Banca d’Impresa to work with 21 Partners

Enterprise Investors closes largest Central European fund

Adveq closes fund-of-funds

Centurion closes maiden fund

Close launches mega VCT

Baronsmead VCT 2 seeks more funds

NGN Capital targets biotech

Exit news

Hard to get out of chemicals

Alchemy sells high street jewellers

Bridgepoint sells USC in secondary buyout

AXA Private Equity sells stake in Macif Group

ECI exits MM Group

Close Brothers sells Capital Incentives to strategic buyer

Jamba! provides return for Summit

Gresham exits Standard Newspapers

Nordic Capital to sell Wilson Logistics to TPG

CapMan sells Sweco interest

Vectura IPOs

Northern Venture Managers exits TJ Brent

3i floats e2v

Azimut to IPO

Fillfactory makes gain for investors

Jefferson Smurfit sell down mooted

OpenPSL exit for Apax

Zentiva IPOs

Quester divests OD2

DMT disappoints with market debut

HgCapital makes big gain on Xyratex IPO

LDC sells Ethel Austin to ABN AMRO

IP2IPO to buy TTV?

Terra Firma exits Wizard Inns

Alchemy floats mining company


Ellens to LSP New recruit at Fondamenta

O’Melveny & Myers appts

ECI boosts team

Van Toor to GLSV

D&T losses to KPMG

Lehman Brothers recruits

Erste Bank moves

Thiery joins Englefield

New face at Nova

Gemini expands

Cesari joins Vestar

Mercapital appoints

New MD at Palomar

New Duke Street partner

Ward becomes chair

Apax Nordic launch

Baker Tilly appts

BPEP CEO retires

New AIFI chairman

CIBC departures

New appts at Lehman Bros

ICG non exec

New Brunswick MD

Osborne Clarke appts DrKW appts

Duke Street Capital promotes

Sagitta moves

Salans expands

CIBC recruits


Know Your Customer!

The need to prevent money laundering and inhibit the passage of funds intended for terrorist purposes has led to the financial services community, and those as diverse as estate agents, casinos and auctioneers, handling large volumes or sums of money being exhorted to ‘Know Your Customer.’ The penalties, in the UK for one, for not being able to prove that you at least tried to know who your customer is are severe: fines proportionate to the size of the corporate entity rather than the severity of the offence and loss of liberty for individuals. But how relevant is the issue of money laundering to Europe’s venture capitalists? Judging by the inclusion of money laundering as an issue of ongoing regulatory concern for the European Venture Capital Association, and other major associations, such as the British Venture Capital Association, it would seem that the issue of money laundering is a concern to venture capitalists. Lisa Bushrod reports.

Irish venture: are VCs’ eyes a’smilin’a’

The Irish Venture Capital Association reported 2003 was a good year for investment, and GPs in the market think things can only get better. Tom Allchorne finds out whether this optimism is well-founded?

Venture finance: enhancing growth

Towards the end of the 1990s, the European venture capital industry had substantial capital in place to support a cycle of dramatic growth in the early stage sector. Funds were plentiful and investors, investment banks, stock markets, corporate advisers and other professionals had formed a solid infrastructure for early stage companies. But the economic downturn saw this ecosystem contract as many investors became disillusioned following the burst of the Internet bubble. And so the main issue for venture today is one of resources. The deals are there and the tech industry in Europe continues to deliver innovative products and technologies, but securing funds is the problem. This is where venture finance can step in. Up to 75% of venture-backed companies in the US have used some form of venture debt to drive growth, but the concept is still relatively new in Europe. Angela Sormani looks at why this is the case and whether the facility will appeal to European entrepreneurs and investors.

LP Corner:

Welcome Break and the drive towards greater transparency

When Welcome Break’s owners, Investcorp, offered to pay bondholders back at par, it marked the end of one of the most tortuous sagas in securitisation of the last few years. Tom Allchorne examines what happened and why it could have important implications for private equity.

Legal & Regulatory

Poland’s new PE vehicle gets mixed reception

On July 1 the new Polish Investment Funds Act comes into force. Replacing its 1997 predecessor the new Act reflects provisions of two EU Directives and while it is primarily concerned with funds that raise money on the capital markets, there is one addition which will be of interest to the Polish private equity community: a new investment vehicle called the non-public assets fund. Tom Allchorne reports.

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