Hicks Muse returns €109m through recap

The US and European buyout firm has recapitalised portfolio company EurotaxGlass’s Holding, in a move that has delivered proceeds of €109m for shareholders in two of its funds.

In a note to limited partners, Hicks Muse Tate & Furst (HMTF) said it had recapitalised portfolio company EurotaxGlass’s and returned €109 million ($143 million) to shareholders.

The note said that the firm’s Europe Fund I limited partners would receive approximately €42.5 million of proceeds, representing the return of 43 percent of the original invested capital of €98.3 million. Meanwhile, Fund IV limited partners would receive $59.7 million of proceeds, representing a return of 74 percent of the original investment of $81.2 million.

The recap sees both Europe Fund I and Fund IV retain their original stakes in the business of 38.9 percent and 41.7 percent respectively. HMTF said it would seek “topline growth and margin improvement over the next 12-18 months” to achieve further value prior to an exit in 2006.

HMTF acquired UK used-car publisher Glass’s Guide from London-based private equity firm Duke Street Capital in 1998 for £126 million. Two years later, HMTF acquired Glass’s Swiss equivalent Eurotax for £130 million, and the two businesses were then merged to form EurotaxGlass’s.

HMTF, which is currently raising a new European fund, yesterday acquired a 21 percent stake in Polish cable operator Aster City from co-investor Argus Capital Partners. It now owns nearly 100 percent of the business, having also bought out the stake held by another co-investor, Emerging Markets Partnership, last November.