Apax growth equity expert joins Fidelity

Former Apax partner Roger Hurwitz has joined Fidelity Ventures, which recently increased its current fund by $150m to better focus on growth equity deals.

Roger Hurwitz is the latest executive to leave Apax Partners’ US division.

Hurwitz is now a partner with Boston- and London-based Fidelity Ventures, the venture capital arm of Fidelity Investments. In his seven years as a partner with Apax, Hurwitz concentrated primarily on technology-related investments.

“I was really focused on growth equity investments over the last several years,” Hurwitz said.

Growth equity investing will be a new emphasis for Fidelity. Its previous investment strategy was limited to early stage technology companies in which it would typically invest between $5 million (€3.8 million) and $20 million. In order to capitalize on growth equity deals in which it could invest up to $50 million, the firm said it has increased its current fund, Fidelity Ventures IV, from $250 million to $400 million.

Apax’s US division has been plagued with a string of recent departures. Former marketing director Laura Brightsen and former chief financial officer Evelyn Pellicone recently left the firm. Two members of Apax’s US retail/consumer division – its head, Chris Reilly, and colleague Allan Karp – will exit the UK-headquartered firm in coming months to head their recently formed middle market consumer-focused firm, KarpReilly.

The departing Karp became a co-chief executive of Apax’s US operations in 2005 after its US arm merged with Saunders Karp & Megrue, the New York firm he co-founded in 1990. The merger was meant to bolster Apax’s US presence.