TowerBrook builds French presence

TowerBrook Capital Partners, the buyout house spun out of Soros Private Equity, has acquired a 67% shareholding in French engineering company GSE. Financial details are not being disclosed, but the deal enables GSE’s management team to increase their share in the company’s equity and their contribution to the business.

GSE is a European leader for large production and industrial building construction. It specialises in the delivery of turnkey construction solutions in the industrial, services and logistical sectors. The company is located in 15 countries across the world and employs 290 people. In 2005, GSE had a turnover of about €450m.

In a statement, Ramez Sousou, co-CEO of TowerBrook, said: “Our interest in GSE is driven by the company’s market positions as well as its potential for further growth. GSE is well positioned to become the world leader in a sector that requires increasing project management skills, technical know-how, and creativity. Under the guidance of Jean-Pierre and Michel Hugues, GSE was the pioneer in its sector. The deal allows them to continue innovating to service their worldwide clients more effectively. We are proud to be associated with this deal.”

The group, which was spun off from financier George Soros’ investment group in 2005, recently announced the final closing on US$1.3bn for its second buyout fund. TowerBrook now manages more than US$2.5bn in capital from offices in London and New York, focusing on buying controlling positions in medium to large companies.