Palamon recruits Italian heavyweight

The mid-market firm is beefing up its advisory board with the hire of Lorenzo Pellicioli, a corporate veteran who led the country’s largest ever buyout almost a decade ago.

Palamon Capital Partners, a European mid-market private equity firm, has appointed Lorenzo Pellicioli, the chief executive of the Italian conglomerate De Agostini, to its board of advisors.

Before De Agostini, whose interests range from financial services to publishing, Pellicioli was chief executive of the directory business Seat Pagine Gialle between 1997 and 2000.  He led Seat’s original buyout deal in 1997. Backed the second time around by BC Partners, CVC Capital Partners, Permira and Investitori Associati, it then became the largest leveraged buyout in Italy in 2003.

Pellicioli is also member of the executive committee and on the board of Generali Insurance and serves as deputy chairman of Générale de Santé.  He is also chairman of DEA Capital.

As a member of Palamon’s board of advisors, Pellicioli joins 10 other business leaders from six countries reflecting the range of service sector companies in which Palamon invests. The board includes Tom Sommerlatte, chairman of Arthur D. Little's management consulting activities in Germany and Austria; and Ron Sandler, chairman of Computacenter, Oxygen and Paternoster.

Sandler is pencilled to lead the government team to nationalise Northern Rock, the stricken UK bank, if a private sector salvation is not possible.

Michael Hoffman, chairman of Palamon Capital Partners, told PEO he had come to know Pellicioli through discussions with De Agostini as the family-owned business looked to diversify away from publishing. He said: “We are developing a strong position with De Agostini and the more time we spent with Mr Pellicioli, the more we realised there was a commonality of interests between us.”

“His extensive experience and deep knowledge of the media, entertainment and healthcare industries will prove invaluable.”

Palamon’s most recent investments include German retailer Dress-for-Less, Europe’s largest online designer fashion outlet, and D&D Media Group, an independent audiovisual producer operating in Belgium, the Netherlands and the UK. 

Italy is Palamon's third largest market with 14 percent of its portfolio invested in the country.