Baird Capital Partners, the US private equity affiliate of Robert W Baird & Co, has established a representative office in Shanghai to provide support and expertise to its current and future US-based portfolio companies operating in China.
The office is the second that Baird has established in Asia following its launch of a Hong Kong office at the beginning of this year.
The firm now has 20 Asia-based operating professionals helping evaluate, develop and execute appropriate Asia strategies on behalf of its portfolio companies. The strategies include distributing products into Asia, developing sourcing relationships and establishing operations in China.
Even private equity firms not persuaded of the merits of investing directly in Asia are nonetheless increasingly aware of the importance of having either an “Asia strategy” or “China strategy” or both. Baird says it has no plans to invest in Asian companies.
“Our expanded presence in Asia best positions us to support our US middle market portfolio companies in proactively addressing both the competitive threats and commercial opportunities China’s growth continues to create,” said Paul Carbone, managing partner of Baird Capital Partners and co-director of Baird Private Equity.
The firm’s Asian operations are overseen by Bob Dods, Peter Chung and Bo Yu. Dods and Chung are founders of RC2 Corp, a publicly traded company with extensive manufacturing and distribution relationships in China. Gordon Pan and Brett Tucker serve as the main conduit between US portfolio companies and the Asia team.
Baird, which has over $1 billion under management, provides later-stage growth capital or change-of-control capital to US-based mid-market companies in the business services, industrial products and healthcare/life science sectors. The firm has US offices in Milwaukee, Chicago, Madison, Philadelphia and Tampa and has European offices – through Granville Baird Capital Partners – in Hamburg, London and Manchester.