German private bank and asset manager Sal Oppenheim and German fund of funds manager CAM Private Equity have unveiled an agreement to merge their private equity fund investment activities.
Under the deal, CAM will take over the private equity fund investment effort of the Cologne-based private investment bank. Sal’s fund investment portfolio will be managed separately from CAM’s fund investment programme. As part of the transaction, Sal Oppenheim will take a 15 per cent shareholding in CAM.
“Through this transaction we gain access to the know-how and experience of the leading German firm in designing and managing private equity fund portfolios,” said Detlef Bierbaum, general partner of Sal Oppenheim, in a statement.
The deal increases CAM’s funds under management to nearly E600m, although the firm would not disclose its previous level of funds under management.
“Private equity is non-core for Sal Oppenheim,” said Ulrich Eilers of CAM Private Equity in an interview. “They decided they wanted to offer their existing clients a first class service with an external partner. It was a big decision for the founding partners of CAM, but the decision was taken in order to strengthen its business with institutional clients and high-net-worth individuals.”
CAM Private Equity, which has offices in Cologne and Munich, was set up in 1999 by Rolf Wickenkamp and Constantin von Dziembowski.
The tie-up with Sal comes ahead of a new fundraising effort that CAM is preparing. The firm is about to launch its third fund, CAM DREI Private Equity, a private equity fund of funds with a target of E200m. “The fund will be split 80-20 in favour of late stage, of which 60 per cent will be invested in Europe and the remainder in the US,” said Eilers.
Sal Oppenheim spokesperson Peter Schwanitz said that the bank intended to support the fundraising and would give the fund access to its client network.
Eilers also said CAM would offer investors with specific requirements the opportunity to invest in the fund via a number of feeder funds. “We expect to raise parallel funds for special investor groups which will take the total funds raised to E400m,” he said, adding that the special investor groups would include pension funds and institutions that have specific investment allocations or are restricted to investment in one country. The fund is expected to hold a first close in the first quarter of 2004.
Sal Oppenheim set up its private equity team in 1998 and last year held a final close of its debut fund of funds, Oppenheim Private Equity Holding, on E60m. The fund is targeting buyout and venture capital funds in the US and Europe. In total, the bank has around E100m in private equity funds under management.