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Electra exits last large Asian investment

Electra Partners Asia managing director John Levack tells Private Equity International that he is focused on its residual investments in Asia.

Through the sale of listed Indian software company Zensar Technologies, Electra Private Equity has exited its last large investment held in the region, Electra Partners Asia managing director John Levack told Private Equity International.

Electra sold its 23 percent stake in Zensar in early October to Apax Partners for £84 million ($128 million; €117 million), it said. The firm initially invested $9 million and held the investment for 18 years. The sale generated a return of 19x on the original cost and an internal rate of return of 18 percent.

Levack’s role now is to handle its residual investments, he said. These are understood to be four small investments that account for less than 1 percent of Electra's total portfolio. 

As of 30 September, Electra Partners, which manages the listed investment trust's portfolio, had £1.8 billion in funds under management including £350 million available for new investments.

The firm is understood to have been reducing its presence in Asia for the last 15 years as it refocused on the UK.

The sale of Zensar follows the sale by Electra's portfolio company AXIO Data Group of Asian healthcare information business MIMS to SMS and Mitsui for $250 million in early October, and the firm’s exit of its stake in UK ventilation company Nuaire in August for which it received £72 million, as reported by PEI.

Electra shareholders will meet on 5 November to vote on a proposal from Sherborne Investors, which holds a 29.28 percent stake in the investment trust, to appoint two of its nominees, Edward Bramson and Ian Brindle to the board.