March 2004 issue

News highlights

Private equity news

Capital Z acquires Hutton Collins interest

Vision Capital acquires CS portfolio

Private Equity Holding appoints new manager

LMA issues standard documentation

Nova Capital expands team

Accelerated IPO to threaten UK buyout prices?

Government review to encourage PE investment

AFIC promotes LBOs

Chemical sector attracts PE backing

SEP appointed to manage LDC portfolio

IPE Expansion Fund seeks French opportunities

Invest Equity targets accession countries

Basle II risks weightings for PE under scrutiny

Lazard hires to build London PE team

Confidence boost for the UK

NIB Capital resurrects Alpinvest name

Mezzanine: losing popularity?

Media sector attracts funds

New name for Digital Networks

Positive outlook for European private equity

Private equity lawyers’ forum first conference

US venture capital looking up

Finnish market static


PEF V reaches first close

NEIF 3 launched

Nobles venture finance debut

Standard Life breaks €1bn barrier

Capricorn VP to raise seed fund

Cape exceeds target

Interregnum boosts funds


Partial Interfloor exit for Rutland

Delta Fluid refi exits CBGC

Invex partial exit from Crystal Home

CVC may float Halfords

3i sells Jaycare in secondary buyout

Bourne Leisure returns to owner’s hands

Exits remain a challenge

Electra sells Vendcrown

Candover sells Clondalkin to WP

Charterhouse Coral Eurobet refi

EAC to float Leapfrog

BS Private Equity sells STC

PPM Ventures gains on Oxoid

Espotting deal sealed

CD&R sells Kinko’s to FedEx

Apax & JPMorgan sell Merlin

IK completes Nobia sale

MGPE Italy sells Konig

Barclays realises LJ Group


New Kennet FD

Interregnum non-exec

Digital Networks name change

ICG into Spain

Abingworth recruits

Parayre joins CSFB

Lazard hires

Unigestion appts

Promotions at Quester

DVC boosts team

Wingfield to Morgan Stanley

GMT industry council

Greenpark Capital moves

Nova grows

SEP expands

Hermes appts

Feddersen resigns

Razzano to Investindustrial

CapMan Oslo appts

CDC moves

New DB loans head

ViaNova recruits

Earlybird builds team

New GIMV board member


LP Corner: grappling with the fund management problem

The majority of European institutional investors arrived on the private equity scene alongside an explosion of fund raising activity globally. In Europe alone EVCA figures show a jump from just over €20bn funds raised in 1998 to €48bn in 2000. This happened at a time when the only way for returns appeared to be up, but it also coincided with European private equity firms jumping in number from around 300 in 1998 to around 1,000 in 2000. Finding firms to invest capital with was not a problem for institutional investors, and while the returns won’t be all that was promised, in part because some of the new entrants never made the grade, for many institutions what they are now grappling with is how to effectively manage these programmes that they jumped into with such gusto. Lisa Bushrod reports.

The Netherlands

Although The Netherlands is one of the smallest countries in the EU, it has some of the largest pension funds in the region, in terms of total assets under management. It is home to well known global companies like Shell and Philips and other household Dutch names with pension funds that have been building up a tradition in investing in private equity, some since the mid 1980s. Anthony O’Connor finds out what Dutch LPs are up to.

Checking out transaction support

Joanna Gant talks to advisers involved in unearthing the truth surrounding a potential PE investment and finds the arsenal of transaction support tools is growing, as are the number of providers.

Recruitment: a good time to look for a job in private equity

But, as Paola Subacchi discovers, the competition remains tough. Today private equity and venture capital, seen as the grubby end of corporate finance five or ten years ago, attract the brightest and the best who previously were only interested in working for the best banking and consulting firms. Consequently the entry bar for private equity and venture capital is today incredibly high, despite this the supply of good candidates far exceeds demand.

Buyouts: Buying at auction

The first six weeks of 2004 saw a jump in M&A activity, which to some will justify the growing optimism surrounding deal flow prospects for 2004. A good proportion of these deals, over the €100m enterprise value, include either private equity buyers or sellers and even private equity firms meeting up as buyer and seller. Francesca Murra reports on what this might mean for the auction process, which has taken something of a battering over the last couple of years as fewer and fewer companies have come to market and where often the only buyers in town have been private equity firms.

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