Procuritas Second Fund Attracts Blue-Chip Backers

Procuritas Partners held a mid-March final closing for Procuritas Capital Partners II just short of the SKr 1 billion (ecu 117 million) mark. During the year that elapsed following the fund’s first closing, the original target of SKr 750 million was significantly over-subscribed, prompting Procuritas to agree an increased upper limit with earlier investors.

Partner Hans Karlander said that Procuritas was delighted with the “tremendous progress” achieved during this fund-raising exercise, which saw over 20 well-recognised investors signing up to provide SKr 963 million for PCP II. Nordic participants include: Merita Nordbanken, Lnsforskringar, WASA and Praktiker Invest from Sweden, along with an investment vehicle backed by a group of high-net-worth individuals; Statoil, Norsk Hydro and Sparbanken Nor from Norway; Pohjola, Sampo and Nova Life from Finland; and BG Bank and DIP from Denmark. Investors from elsewhere include Bell Atlantic Asset Management, Chancellor, Crossroads, Granville, IBJ, Bank Vontobel’s Private Equity Holding fund-of-funds (story, page 11), Olayan Group and another major Middle Eastern investor. Procuritas’ managers themselves are committing nearly 7% of the fund’s total.

The calibre of this investor line-up is a testament to the performance of Procuritas’ previous vehicle, the SKr 250 million MBO Invest Consortium raised in 1990. This fund has generated net returns to investors of over 70% per annum, with some 95% of value being returned in the form of cash. However, previous investors accounted for a relatively small proportion of PCP II, Hans Karlander explained, since many of them have established vehicles of their own and are no longer active in the third-party funds market. The repeat investment rate among those previous backers which still are active fund investors was high.

The new fund has so far invested some SKr 200 million in three deals: City Mail, Nordic Specialist Group (EVCJ February/March 1998, page 31) and, most recently, Sandr Projekt (story, page 32).

PCP II is seeing a strong deal flow at present, while competition at the top end of the Nordic buyout markets has intensified considerably over the past couple of years, Hans Karlander reports that the mid-market segment, Procuritas’s traditional hunting ground, is continuing to throw up attractive investment opportunities.