Consumer sector pro joins Lunar

Eric Yiming, an executive with experience in consumer retail, will join the China-focused private equity firm as a partner.

Lunar Capital has hired Eric Yiming as a partner to focus on food, beverage and consumer goods investments in China, according to a company statement. Yiming will assume the position of sector partner, having already served in an advisory capacity to Lunar since 2012. 

His previous positions included managing director of Greater China for Sampoerna Tobacco Group, vice-president of marketing in Asia Pacific for Heineken and general manager of Tropicana in China.

“Eric has worked with us for about a year now helping us diligence certain [consumer-related] companies that we're looking at. We've been very pleased with his work and have built up a good sense of trust and working relationship so we're promoting him to one of our sector partners to help us cover that sector.”

Lunar has been “aggressively trying to expand [its] operations team”, managing partner Derek Sulger had told Private Equity International earlier. 

He explained further, “We're doing this now simply because we own

We own more businesses so we need more and more management

Derek Sulger, managing partner, Lunar Capital

more businesses so we need more and more management and we need to manage more and more management.”

The firm, which says it has a heavy focus on operational changes, also recently hired two Shanghai-based sector partners for its operational team. In March, Vincent Sun joined the firm as sector partner for high-end consumer products and Simon Liu became sector partner for the beverage industry.

Lunar Capital is one of the few private equity firms in China focused solely on control deals. “I really believe the greatest value we bring to investors is that we own that majority. We have the responsibility to run these companies well and so need more people to help us do that,” Sulger continued. “What guys like Eric help us do is run the executive management committee meetings better, run the boards better, they help go in and solve specific problems or integrate new management better.”

As of March 2013, Lunar’s $200 million third fund is nearly 70 percent invested. The firm is planning to raise a new fund which may have the same size as its predecessor, according to PEI’s Research & Analytics division.