GMT to step up investment effort

The sector specialist has appointed Jonathan Gillbanks as it looks for opportunities in Europe for its E365m communications fund.

GMT Communications Partners, the European private equity firm that specialises in investments in the communications sector, has appointed Jonathan Gillbanks as vice president. The former Lehman’s M&A vice president will join the firm’s investment team in London.

Gillbanks will now join the GMT team on a full-time basis, having initially joined GMT in an advisory role last year, where he worked at PEPcom, GMT’s German cable TV investment.

As a member of Lehman Brothers’ M&A team in New York and London, Gillbanks was responsible for media and cable television transactions, working on financing assignments including NTL, the BBC, Kirch Media and RAI.  Gillbanks also worked for SBC Warburg in New York between 1995 to 1998.

Jeffrey Montgomery, managing partner at GMT Communications Partners, said the appointment had come at a time when the firm was looking to capitalise on an increase in opportunities in the European communications sector. “Gillbanks brings considerable industry experience covering both the US and European markets at a time when we are working on some very interesting deals in the sector.”

Current partners at GMT have worked together since founding Europe’s first communications fund, Baring Communications Equity Limited, in 1992. Investments to date include Internet Network Services (UK), Media Publications (France), Mobifon (Romania), EUSA (Spain), Quote (Netherlands), Orion Publishing (UK), PEPcom (Germany) and Nexus (UK). GMT closed a E365m fund at the end of 2000.