AtriA loses two after acrimonious split

Managing partners Thibaut de Chassey and Edouard Thomazeau have left the Paris-based firm following disagreements over its direction.

Thibaut de Chassey and Edouard Thomazeau – both managing partners of AtriA Capital Partenaires – have resigned from the French mid-market firm citing strategic differences with the firm’s founder and majority shareholder Dominique Oger.

“[We have] resigned together from our positions for strategic divergence,” said de Chassey in an email sent over the weekend, without elaborating further on the differences. de Chassey and Thomazeau, who had both been with the firm since its inception in 2000, are understood to be working on a new project together, although details are as yet unknown.

“During our 11 happy years with the firm, we led or played a key role in 16 investments,” de Chassey said, adding the transactions had generated an overall IRR of more than 30 percent.

Reports on French news site over the weekend said the two managing partners had left for separate reasons, with Thomazeau moving to manage a small industrial business. This was denied by a source close to the pair, who confirmed they left the firm following a number of disagreements over the way the firm was being run.

It is unclear at this stage whether any other partners – there are three more as well as Oger – will follow the pair.

AtriA declined to comment on the departures beyond confirming them.  de Chassey and Thomazeau declined to comment beyond their brief email.

AtriA is still investing its third fund, which it closed in 2006 on €300 million. The firm raised the money in less than six months and beat its initial target by €50 million.

The firm recently emerged from a long-running dispute with one of its limited partners, family office Massena Capital Partners. The nature of the dispute has not been made public, but it is understood that Massena had wanted to move out of the private equity asset class. In a statement from AtriA last week, however, the firm said it had agreed with Massena that it was in the “best interest of them and their investors to settle their differences”. Under the terms of the agreement reached, Massena remained an investor in AtriA’s most recent fund.

Other limited partners in the fund include the California State Teachers’ Retirement Scheme, LGT Capital Partners, Altius Associates and Pantheon.