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Morgan Stanley boosts European buyout team

The global bank has recruited two buyout professionals from Apax Partners and Permira as it raises a $6bn global fund.

Morgan Stanley Private Equity, the captive firm of the global bank, has recruited Jean-Philippe Barade and Alasdair Thomson as executive directors. Barade was a principal at Permira, a European buyout firm, and Thomson was a principal at Apax Partners.

Almost nobody thinks the move to spin out Metalmark was a good idea.

Brian Magnus

Brian Magnus, co-head of Morgan Stanley Private Equity in Europe, said: “This is the last part of the global team. Now that’s done and everybody’s on board. We had a lot of plumbing to get right, including the relationship of ourselves with the investment bank.”

He said the timing had been good. “History shows the best vintage years for private equity investments are the ones that follow market downturns… ‘08 and ‘09 promise to be very good vintage years. A lot of funds will spend effort and resource managing out ‘06 and `07 investments, we don’t have any of those and so we can concentrate on new investments.”

Barade joined Permira in 1999 from Credit Suisse First Boston, where he was an investment banking associate. He worked for Permira in the consumer, retail and leisure sectors.

Thomson worked in specialist retail, consumer goods, leisure and healthcare at Apax. He was previously a consultant at Bain & Company from 1999 to 2001. Prior to that he worked at Coats Viyella in South East Asia, South America and Europe, where he held several positions, becoming head of retail customer management. Thomson speaks English, French, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese.

The captive firm recruited Graham Keniston-Cooper last year to run its European operation alongside Magnus, previously the bank’s head of UK investment banking. Keniston-Cooper headed up Lazard’s private equity arm from 2004 to 2006. 

The buyout arm is also fundraising for a $6 billion (€3.9 billion) global fund, according to market sources. It has done three deals in the US and has yet to sign its first deal in Europe. The bank has been rebuilding its global presence in private equity generally, after it span out Metalmark, its former buyout arm.

“Almost nobody thinks the move to spin out Metalmark was a good idea.” He said banks which had used their balance sheet in recent years had prospered, such as Goldman Sachs.

He said he expected deals in Europe to come back in the fourth quarter of 2008 and that 2009 will be a good vintage year. In the US, he said, the disconnect between buyers and sellers had already begun to ease.