Angelo Gordon hires healthcare chief

The firm has hired 20-year healthcare veteran Mark Visser as managing director and leader of healthcare activities, a newly created position.

Angelo Gordon has hired former Behrman Capital partner Mark Visser to lead the firm’s healthcare activities.

Visser, who joined Behrman in 1994 and was in charge of healthcare investments, has 20 years of experience in the sector, having invested in companies ranging from healthcare services to products. He previously worked for Merrill Lynch in the investment banking group where he focused on mergers and acquisitions and other corporate finance transactions. Visser joins Angelo Gordon as a managing director in the New York office, a newly created position.

“The evolving healthcare environment will provide numerous investment opportunities as new reimbursement, regulatory and technology paradigms take hold over the next few years,” Visser said in a statement.

Healthcare has increasingly become a focus of private equity firms. The recent $3.79 billion initial public offering of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Bain Capital-backed hospital operator HCA – the largest ever private equity-backed IPO – is an example of just how lucrative healthcare-related investments can be for private equity.

In the US, healthcare reform will be a “battle between regulation and innovation” when it comes to private equity, said Randolph Friedman, founder of Friedman Capital, which focuses on investments in the healthcare sector.

Friedman launched the independent firm earlier this month to make co-investments in distribution and healthcare services businesses with the ultimate goal of becoming a control investor with its own fund.

In addition to healthcare, Angelo Gordon focuses on businesses in the financial services and consumer & retail sectors, making investments in transactions ranging from $50 million to $500 million.