Paine to buy German manufacturer from Montagu

Paine & Partners has inked its second deal since changing its name from Fox Paine, prompted by settlement of a lawsuit between Dexter Paine and former partner Saul Fox.

Paine & Partners has agreed to acquire Stabilus from UK private equity firm Montagu Private Equity for an undisclosed sum. The transaction is expected to close in April 2008 pending antitrust approval.

Montagu held Stabilus for three and a half years following a management buyout from Demag Holding in 2004. During that time, the Germany-based manufacturer of gas springs has repositioned its production network, with expanded production facilities and new factories.

Paine said it intends to grow the company globally.

The deal is Paine’s second since the California middle market firm Fox Paine was renamed Paine & Partners following a bitter, four-month legal battle between Saul Fox and Dexter Paine. The lawsuit brought by Fox against Paine was settled out of court in December 2007.

Paine’s investment in Stabilus follows its buyout of Capital Z’s hedge fund sponsorship business on 24 January conducted in partnership with Capital Z Investment Partners. Following the transaction, a new alternative asset management business, Capital Z Asset Management, was established to continue and expand Capital Z’s hedge fund sponsorship activities.

Montagu primarily conducts management buyouts in stable niche industries and has been active in German-speaking markets since the early 1990s. The firm has more than €3 billion ($4.4 billion) in assets under management.