Argos Soditic loses Italian chief ahead of fundraise

Country head Matteo Carlotti has amicably left the European buyout firm after disagreements over the direction of its Italian operations. The firm's Italian investments include racing brand Sparco.

Argos Soditic is to part company with Matteo Carlotti, its head of Italian operations, due to “to strategic disagreements about the scope of Argos Soditic’s future operations in the Italian private equity market”, according to a statement from the firm.

Carlotti, who joined the firm in 1997, will be replaced at the Milan office’s helm by current partners Jean-Pierre Di Benedetti and Mirco Dilda, who become joint managing directors.

The firm was unavailable to give further details about the departure.

The news comes before Argos Soditic, who recently hired Constance Jay to establish a devoted investor relations function, begins marketing its sixth buyout fund in 2009. The firm is currently fundraising for its €150 million mezzanine fund, Argos Expansion, which the firm hopes to close by the end of 2008.

Sparco: investment overseen by Carlotti

Argos Soditic has offices in Milan, Geneva and Paris. The firm’s Italian investments include racing brand Sparco and CH&F, a food distribution business.

In July it announced its first exit from Fund V when it sold Italian packaging company GPP Industrie Grafiche, on which the firm said it doubled its money in just over two years.

Carlotti sits on the board of directors of the Italian Venture Capital Association, AIFI, and chairs its corporate governance committee.