Newcomer Spencer exits CD&R

Christopher Spencer has left Clayton Dubilier & Rice’s London office less than seven months after coming in to help boost the firm’s presence in the European buyout market.

Christopher Spencer has left US private equity house Clayton Dubilier & Rice,  whose London office he had joined only seven months ago as a partner.  


A spokesperson for CD&R in London declined to comment.


Spencer, who joined the firm from UK rival Candover, was brought in at the beginning of December 2002 to work alongside Bruno Deschamps, a former industry executive, who was also hired as a partner.


The appointment of Deschamps and Spencer, as well as that of Olivier Cognet, who was hired as a partner last August, were part of an effort to step up CD&R’s European buyout activity.


The news, first reported on Bloomberg today, comes less than six months after Benedikt von Schröder, a German national who had been with the firm for three years, left the firm's London office.


After von Schröder's departure, CD&R confirmed that it was not going to proceed with plans to establish a German office. In 2001, the firm’s 2000 investment in Germany-based aircraft builder Fairchild Dornier resulted in a write-off when the company went collapsed.


Von Schröder has since joined Augusta Finance, a London-based merchant bank, to lead its German activities.


During his time at Candover between 1998 and 2002, Spencer had been responsible for setting up the firm’s Paris offices. Prior to Candover, he worked at UBS in the firm’s mergers and acquisitions department.


According to Bloomberg, CD&R has so far made seven investments in Europe. In 2002, it acquired UK frozen-food supplier Brake Bros.