BPEP completes buyout, Brotchie retires

Baring Private Equity Partners has announced its own MBO from ING Group, giving regional teams control over their respective businesses.

International private equity manager Baring Private Equity Partners (BPEP) has announced its own buyout from Dutch parent bank ING Group. The new firm will trade as BPEP International.

Chris Brotchie has retired as chief executive officer, a position that will not be replaced in the new structure. John Dare, the former chairman of BPEP, will serve as non-executive chairman of BPEP International. David Huckfield, who led the transaction on behalf of the new firm's owners, will continue his role as chief operating officer.

Under the restructuring of the organisation, the senior partners managing BPEP’s regional and country funds will take ownership of their respective businesses. Mark Hawkesworth (Western Europe), Gyuri Karady (Central Europe), Mike Calvey (Russia), Rahul Bhasin (India), Jean Salata (Asia), Varel Freeman (Latin America), Gilbert Chalk (English Growth Fund) and Jose Angel Sarasa (Spain) will become owners and directors of BPEP International, which has acquired the rights to use the Baring Private Equity name. Dare and Huckfield are also stakeholders in the new company.

The partners received legal advice from Travers Smith Braithwaite, whose team was led by Bob Barry and Richard Marke.

In an interview with PrivateEquityOnline, Dare said that the advantages of the new structure were total independence from ING and a more decentralised structure: “The senior partners now have complete ownership and their interests are even further aligned with those of the investor.”

ING will retain its existing investments in BPEP funds, but will not participate as sponsor in new funds. Currently, ING has capital commitments of $360 million (€295 million) in BPEP funds, representing 18 percent of BPEP’s total assets under management of $2 billion.

BPEP’s Central & Eastern Europe division is poised to begin fundraising for a second fund that is expected to double the €86 million Baring Central European Fund I, which is nearing full investment.

In Latin America, according to Dare, “the team is well-advanced and a follow-on fund for Mexico will be coming to market as soon as possible, now that the buyout has happened.” A $200 million Mexico fund was launched in late 2002, but put on hold last year.