Investitori Associati targets E600m fund

Milan-based private equity firm Investitori Associati has set out to raise around E600m for a new fund targeting the Italian buyout market, according to reports.

The Daily Deal says Investitori Associati is targeting a new E600m fund for investment in the fast-growing Italian MBO market.

If it reaches its target the fund will be E200m larger than its predecessor, Investitori Associati III, which is currently 70 per cent invested. The increased ambition derives from high expectations of the Italian buyout market, which delivered Europe’s two largest transactions in the third quarter of 2003.

Investitori Associati was an investor in one of these, the E5.65bn buyout of directory business SEAT Pagine Gialle, alongside BC Partners, CVC Capital Partners and Permira. The other mega-deal in the third quarter was the E1.6bn purchase of aerospace business Fiat Avio by Carlyle Group.

Investitori Associati is aiming to follow in the footsteps of domestic rival BS Private Equity, which closed a E550m fund in August, and Clessidra Capital, the debut Italian fund that achieved a first close of E560m last month ahead of a planned E1bn final close next year.

The Daily Deal says two-thirds of the Investitori Associati fund will be reserved for existing investors including the likes of Assicurazioni Generali, Banca Intesa and Lehman Brothers. But the firm is said to be in contact with 30 to 40 potential new European and US investors with the intention of bringing in seven or eight who will constitute the remaining one-third of funding.

Stefano Miccinelli, a senior partner at Investitori Associati, is quoted as saying that the firm will not be using a placement agent and hopes to conclude the fundraising between February and March 2004.