Coller bags French captive

Coller Capital has agreed the latest in a slew of banking-related secondaries this year sparked by the forthcoming Volcker rule, acquiring the in-house private equity arm of French bank Crédit Agricole.

Secondaries specialist Coller Capital has acquired Crédit Agricole Private Equity (CAPE), the French bank’s in-house private equity arm. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, and the transaction remains subject to regulatory approval.

CAPE targets a range of private equity investments from mid-market buyouts in France to growth and venture capital, mezzanine and renewable energy deals.

In a statement, Coller and Crédit Agricole said the deal would reduce the French bank’s risk-weighted assets by about €900 million. The bank said it would continue to provide financing for small to medium-sized enterprises in France through the private equity vehicles owned and managed by Crédit Agricole Regional Banks, as well through the IDIA, a partner organisation that provides equity and quasi-equity financing to agriculture-related businesses.

The deal follows a number of similar transactions this year as investment banks look to divest non-core assets in response to a raft of forthcoming regulatory measures, with the so-called Volcker rule within the Dodd-Frank legislation chief amongst them.

AXA Private Equity, for example, has been highly acquisitive, buying private equity portfolios from the likes of Mizuho, HSH Nordbank, Citigroup and Barclays.