AXA achieves 3x with Trecobat sale

The private equity arm of the French insurance giant achieved a 46% IRR on its investment in French house builder Trecobat.

AXA Private Equity has sold its 46.5 percent share in Trecobat Group back to the Britanny-based home builder’s management team.

Financial details were not disclosed, but in an interview with PEO, AXA managing director Baudouin D’Herouville said the sale generated a 3x multiple on AXA's original investment and a 46 percent internal rate of return.

AXA bought a 48 percent share in Trecobat in 2007 which was reduced to 46.5 percent in 2009 when a portion was sold to incoming senior management.

D’Herouville said that selling its shareholding back to the management team was in the spirit of the original agreement with Trecobat back in 2007, as Trecobat had wished to remain an independent actor and did not wish to be sold to an external buyer.

Since AXA’s acquisition, Trecobat’s share of the French home building market has grown from around 9-10 percent in 2007 to around 15 percent in 2010, said D’Herouville, who also added that the company’s turnover was around €100 million in 2009.

AXA acquired Trecobat in March 2007 for an undisclosed sum on behalf of its small cap buyout funds AXA Expansion Funds I and II. Fund II closed on €353 million in 2007. 

In related news, AXA Private Equity has confirmed the appointment of Benoit Verbrugghe as the head of its New York office. Last week PEO revealed that Verbrugghe had been running the New York office following the departure of former co-heads Daniel Benin and Stéphane Chevrier.