Crochet sews up Keensight promotion

The former R Capital Management team has just done its second deal as it prepares to raise its first independent fund.

Paris-based Keensight Capital has promoted Philippe Crochet to partner, as the firm gears up to raise its first fund following its spin-out from the Rothschild Group last year.

Crochet joined R Capital, a subsidiary of the Rothschild Group, as an investment director in 2008 and was involved in its subsequent spin-out last November. He becomes the fourth partner at Keensight alongside Jean-Michel Beghin, Jérôme Pujol and Pierre Rémy, according to a statement.

Crochet began his career in 1998 in the telecom sector. He worked at Nortel and Algety Telecom before joining American-based Corvis Corporation, where he held various roles within the marketing and sales teams. In 2003, he joined Partech International, a private equity firm focused on the US and Europe, where he was involved in investments in the IT sector.

The promotion comes shortly after Keensight’s second investment since the spin-out. Last week, the firm invested an undisclosed amount in Menix, a French producer of orthopedic prostheses and dental implants, alongside the company’s management and fellow private equity groups LBO Partners and Turenne Investissement.

Lyon-based Menix was created in 2009 as a result of a merger between Serf and Dedienne Santé, two French companies in the orthopedic and dental implant sectors. The company is expected to achieve turnover of close to €50 million this year (up from €6 million in 2008) and aims to double this figure in five years, both through extending its product range and accelerating its international development, according to a statement.

Keensight, which also took a majority stake in French open-source software business Smile in January, is currently investing from the fund it acquired when it spun out of R Capital Management. It declined to comment on the size of this fund. R Capital’s latest Fund III was a €100 million 2010-vintage, according to Private Equity International’s Research and Analytics division.

Keensight plans to launch its first independent fund this year. The firm declined to comment on fundraising.

Keensight typically invests in companies with high-growth potential and revenues in the €10 million to €150 million range. The firm deploys between €5 million and €30 million per deal and usually invests in the information technology, healthcare and energy sector.