Dwight Poler: Countdown to 2008

Cross-border M&A trends will continue to play to Bain Capital's strengths in 2008, according to one of its managing directors.

Dwight Poler

“We believe there will be a continuing shift toward more cross-border global deals, as these underlying companies are seeking both strategic support and capital to compete more effectively to build equity value.  We also expect to see further opportunities involving the continued development of emerging markets such as Eastern Europe, India and South Africa. 

Examples of how Bain Capital is executing against this strategy include its acquisition of Edcon, the leading retailer in South Africa, and the pending cross border deal to acquire 3Com Corporation, a networking company based in the US but with extensive operations in Asia. 

These trends have served Bain Capital well in 2006 and throughout 2007 as they play well to our strengths – complex transactions where private equity investment is augmented with the firm's resources to support the mandate of management teams for corporate change and global expansion.

In 2008, Bain Capital, will continue to focus on leveraging our teams around the world to identify and execute investment opportunities.  We will also support our European portfolio companies with significant operations or aspirations abroad, such as FCI and Ideal Standard.” Dwight Poler, a managing director at Bain Capital

Bain Capital enjoyed a 2007 that was emblematic of the industry’s fortunes.

Alongside its partner Thomas H. Lee Partners it opened the year with one of the biggest buyouts on record. It closed the year by joining the latest buyout trend. It has extended the closing dates for the mega buyout negotiated before the current credit market dislocation.

The private equity firms pushed the deadline for their $27.5 billion buyout of US media company Clear Channel Communications to 12 June 2008. The agreement had previously stipulated that any party could walk away from the buyout if it was not completed by December.

It sold well throughout the year notching exits on West Coast sandwich chain Togo’s Eateries, a division of its portfolio company Dunkin’ Brands, to San Francisco private equity firm Mainsail Partners for an undisclosed amount; on Burger King in a secondary market sale of shares and on SigmaKalon, a paint company.

Its investment in 3Com, a US networking business, was more contentious, attracting political scrutiny.