Leman postpones fundraising effort

Swiss buyout firm Leman Capital has pulled its fundraising for BVP Europe II after failing to generate enough support to reach its €400m to €500m target.

Leman Capital, the Swiss-based private equity firm that invests in European mid-market buyouts, has postponed its latest fundraising effort. 

Leman announced a first closing of its second buyout fund at €150 million ($193 million) in August 2002, with commitments solely from previous investors in the firm’s €155 million BVP Europe I fund.

Said Leman managing partner Auguste Betschart: “We tested out the market, but the feedback was that we hadn’t achieved enough exits. We will now invest what we have got and go out to the market again in 12 to 18 months’ time. At that time, we think the environment should be better and anticipate having completed two or three more exits by then.” He added that next time the firm would target between €300m and €400m.

BVP Europe II aimed to extend the geographical remit of its predecessor by focusing on investments in Italy, Spain and Benelux as well as Switzerland, Germany, France and Austria.   

Despite the fundraising setback the firm has announced two new appointments, including Dutchman Pieter van Tiel as its first chief financial officer. Van Tiel was previously at treasury consultants CFT Associates as managing partner covering French-speaking Switzerland. He had previous spells as an international financial director at Elizabeth Arden and a funding manager at Union Carbide.

In addition, Gabriel Champenaud has joined the investment team as an associate having previously worked as business development manager at Merchant Venture Investments, a pool of 400 entrepreneurs and senior industry executives investing in private equity.