Ex-Towerbrook MD launches own venture

Former Towerbrook Capital Partners managing director John Sinik has launched a debt fund management business which is hoping to raise at least €300m for its maiden vehicle.

John Sinik, who joined Towerbrook Capital Partners in 2008 as a managing director having worked as global head of leveraged finance at UBS, left the firm in February to launch his own venture, Metric Capital Partners.

MCP will provide debt to European mid-cap companies with enterprise values between €50 million and €500 million, Sinik said. It will invest in buyouts, growth and acquisition capital, liquidity facilities and rescue financing packages, he said. The firm will also build its asset base by buying existing loans where lenders are fatigued, forced sellers, or simply looking to reduce exposure to particular borrowers.

A source close to the firm said MCP is looking to raise between €300 million and €500 million for its debut fund, Metric Capital Partners I. MCP declined to comment on the fundraising however.

MCP is understood to be in talks with a range of limited partners including sovereign wealth funds, pension funds and endowments. No placement agent has yet been mandated to assist with the fundraising, according to a source close to the firm.  

Sinik, managing partner of the new firm, has assembled what he called “a pretty amazing team” drawn from across the private equity and intermediary communities. Peter Cornell, former managing director and head of investor relations at buyout firm Terra Firma, and a former chief executive of law firm Clifford Chance, has joined MCP as a partner and head of investor relations.

John Connolly, who is set to step down as global chairman and UK chief executive of accountancy group Deloitte at the end of May, will become chairman of MCP, Sinik said. Ex-UBS and Barclays Capital executive Giovanni Miele has joined as a partner and head of origination. Two principals, David Scheurl (formerly of Deutsche Bank and MatlinPatterson) and Ilkka Rantanen (ex-UBS and Amanda Capital), round out the team.

While the large cap end of the market is well-served, our pipeline of opportunities illustrates the continued demand from European mid-cap companies for financing

John Sinik

Sinik explained the reasoning behind the new venture: “I really enjoyed my time at TowerBrook and learned a tremendous amount during my three years there, particularly in relation to my involvement with the establishment of Haymarket Financial. The founding of Metric Capital is a logical next step in my career, as I've spent all of my 15 years in Europe committing capital, most of it in credit. The aggregate capital commitments of myself and the team totals north of €100 billion.

“We are highly confident in our strategy. While the large cap end of the financing markets is well-served, our pipeline of opportunities illustrates the continued demand from European mid-cap companies for financing,” he said.

John Connolly added: “Economies across Europe are exhibiting rather tepid recovery as we emerge from the recession. Sustainable recovery will be driven, in part, by mid-market companies having access to the necessary capital to grow their businesses. We are excited about the prospects for Metric Capital serving as a new breed of lender to fulfil this critical market need.”