New Europe Capital makes two Romanian investments(3)

Bucharest-based New Europe Capital has made two acquisitions in Romania, as it looks to invest its recently-raised second fund.

New Europe Capital, a Romania-focused private equity firm, has completed the second and third deals from its latest fund, with the acquisition of private healthcare business Romar Medical and receivable collection business Top Factoring.

New Europe, which is currently investing a €64 million ($88 million) fund, has invested €3 million for a minority stake in Romar, one of Romania’s biggest providers of private healthcare. The business operates 15 policlinics, four diagnostic centres and five laboratories and generated more than €9 million of sales in 2006.

The firm has also invested €3 million for a 92.3 percent stake in Top Factoring, Romania’s third biggest receivable collection business.

The investments have been made from Reconstruction Capital II, a €64 million fund that closed in May 2006 and is listed on London’s Alternative Investment Market. The fund made its first investment in November 2006, when it bought a 16.4 percent stake in dairy product manufacturer Albalacht.

The fund’s predecessor was launched in 1997 with around €5 million of committed capital.

Romania has become a more attractive destination for private equity capital, driven by the country’s economic growth and consolidation opportunities. Ion Florescu, founder of New Europe Capital, said: “Investing in Romania at this time presents a growth opportunity that is simply no longer available in the more mature central and eastern European markets.”

Other private equity players active in the country include AIG Capital Partners, an emerging markets private equity firm, which recently bought a 42 percent stake in Digital Cable Systems, Romania’s third biggest provider of video re-transmission services, for €45 million.