AIG sells Bulgarian finance business

The central and eastern Europe buyout specialist has sold Bulgarian consumer loans business JetFinance to BNP Paribas.

AIG Capital Partners, the buyout division of the US insurance group, has completed a successful exit from its first central and eastern Europe fund, with the sale of Bulgarian consumer finance business JetFinance International to BNP Paribas’s consumer arm Cetelem.

AIG bought a 51 percent stake in JetFinance in 2004 through its New Europe Fund. The company, which was founded in 2001, is now the leading consumer finance business in Bulgaria, offering consumer finance and personal loans. It has total assets of €109 million.

AIG director Michal Gontar said the investment was a classic example of the right business at the right time: “Working together with JetFinance’s first-class management team, we were able to implement a very well prepared strategy at the right moment of market development.”

The AIG New Europe Fund closed in 1999 with $321 million of commitments. The firm recently raised the fund’s successor, New Europe Fund II, which closed on €523 million in March.

AIG Capital Partners is a subsidiary of AIG Global Investment Group which has about $563 billion in assets under management. In addition to private equity, AIGGIG invests in equities, fixed income, hedge funds and real estate.

Mezzanine Management also owned an 8 percent stake in JetFinance through its Accession Mezzanine Capital fund, which is focused on central and eastern Europe.