Capvis raises CHF1bn

The Swiss mid-market buyout firm has almost doubled the size of its fund scaling up against the domestic competition.

Capvis Equity Partners has raised CHF1 billion ($995 million; €628.8 million), according to an investor. It had initial plans to raise €500 million ($760 million) in March 2007 as reported by PEO.

The fundraising is nearly double the Swiss mid-market firm’s previous fundraising effort, which raised €340 million in 2004. This was the largest fund raised by a domestic Swiss private equity firm. Its nearest local rival Argos Soditic raised €275 million in 2006.  

Fundraising was carried out by placement agent MVision.

Capvis made several acquisitions last year including domestic chair upholstery company de Sede and textiles company Küsters Textile.

The firm has had several realisations in recent years including automotive supplier Polytec where revenues increased from €80 million at acquisition in 2000 to €500 million upon flotation in 2006.  

Capvis invests in companies with a turnover of between €50 and €500 million, and prefers to acquire a majority stake.

It invests a minimum of €15 million in each transaction.

Capvis started life in 1990 as the private equity division of the Swiss Bank Corporation. In 1999 the division became Capvis Equity Partners, but remained a semi-captive fund, with a cornerstone investment from Swiss bank UBS. In 2003 it became fully independent.