Secondary House of the Year

“It feels like a good time for Greenpark to be up for this award, as 2007 marked the best year to date in our continuing success story,” says director and co-founder Joanna Jordan.

In June the firm announced the close of its €730m second fund, Greenpark International Investors III. The new fund followed rapidly on from its predecessor, raised in 2004 and means the firm now has €1.3bn under management. Investors in the new fund were major institutions from Europe, the US, the Far East and the Middle East.

“The fund, which had significant excess demand, reflects the increasing importance of the secondaries market and the success of Greenpark’s first two funds. It also showed the attraction for investors of the firm’s mid-market niche.

Greenpark was formed in 2000 and specialises in providing liquidity for investors in buyout, venture and other private equity interests who want to sell their investments before they reach maturity. The European secondaries market has grown significantly since it was established in the 1990s, as it offers liquidity to investors.

During the year Greenpark Capital strengthened its team, with a series of key promotions and the appointment of two new investment directors. It also moved to larger offices to accommodate future expansion. “We have a multilingual, multicultural team with significant experience in corporate finance and cross-border M&A, helping ensure the expert execution of transactions throughout Europe and across the world,” says Jordan.

The firm has established a sound reputation for its investment practices, innovative deal structuring and a responsive approach to sellers’ specific needs. It also focuses on value rather than volume, says Jordan, with an emphasis on mid-market European transactions that can offer better returns than the bulk end of the secondaries market, which is focused on volume.

She adds: “We are now an established player in the secondaries market, known for our sound investment skills, discretion and ability to react quickly to opportunities in the market. As a result we’ve made some very good returns for investors.”

She says that, looking forward, there is less certainty now for the private equity asset class than there has been for some time and there is likely to be less liquidity in the primary market over the medium term. That is likely to mean that the secondaries market’s role as a provider of liquidity is set to become even more important.