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Vertu hires CPPIB’s Gil Nayot as partner ahead of fund launch

Nayot joins Vertu Capital from his role as the head of tech for CPPIB's private equity group, marking the firm's third senior hire since September.

Vertu Capital hired Gil Nayot as a partner as the tech private equity firm scopes out fresh deal opportunities and prepares to launch a first fund, Buyouts has learned.

Nayot joined Vertu this month after a more than 10-year career in global PE. Eight of those years were spent at Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, where he was a senior principal and head of the direct PE group’s tech vertical.

Nayot participated in CPPIB investments in a range of enterprise software and other tech businesses. They include Informatica, a Redwood City, California-based enterprise data integration software maker, acquired in 2015 alongside Permira for $5.3 billion. Nayot sat on Informatica’s board.

Before CPPIB, Nayot was with Lake Capital Partners, where he focused on investing in mid-market companies in tech and business services sectors. He previously worked with Bain & Company.

Nayot is Vertu’s third senior hire in the past few months. In September, the firm brought on Kimberly Davis, formerly with TorQuest Partners, as COO and a partner. In November, it recruited Mitul Shah, formerly with KPMG, as an associate.

Vertu is adding to senior- and junior-level positions as part of its plan to unveil an inaugural fund sometime in 2020, Buyouts reported last month.

With a core deal team now in place, Vertu is also actively looking at new investments, Managing Partner Lisa Melchior said.

Toronto-based Vertu was founded in 2017 by Melchior, formerly a managing director of OMERS Private Equity. She was with OMERS for more than 17 years, leading North American tech investing.

Melchior began Vertu by investing her own and co-investor capital, a strategy intended to validate her investment thesis and build out a deal pipeline. She told Buyouts the firm is in talks with family offices, institutions, wealthy individuals and other potential investors about Vertu Capital Fund I, the target of which remains undetermined.

Vertu invests $25 million to $75 million in B2B or B2G tech companies, with a focus on late-stage growth equity and lower-to mid-market buyouts. Target opportunities typically have revenue of $20 million-plus and are pursuing organic or M&A expansion in markets of $1 billion or greater.

Earlier this year, Vertu closed its debut investment, acquiring Firmex, a Toronto-based provider of virtual data rooms and secure document-sharing solutions. The seller was Novacap.

Action Item: Learn more about Vertu Capital here.