Large-Cap Firm of the Year in Europe

  1. KKR
  2. EQT
  3. CVC Capital Partners

This is KKR’s first win in this category. The PE heavyweight invested and committed across seven transactions via its European and core private equity strategies during the qualifying period. Notable deals included Accell Group, Körber Supply Chain Software, Contabo, IVI-RMA and GeneraLife, as well as 16 add-ons within the portfolio.

Mid-Cap Firm of the Year in Europe

  1. Apax Partners
  2. Triton Partners
  3. Inflexion Private Equity Partners

London-based Apax Partners takes home the prize for this category for the first time, following a busy dealmaking year. The firm made investments in T-Mobile Netherlands, EcoOnline and Pickles Auctions, while exits included MyCase, Boasso Global, Kepro and Lever. It raised more than $10 billion for the first close of Apax XI in September after just five months, representing 75 percent of its target.

Limited Partner of the Year in Europe

  1. Mubadala Capital
  2. National Employment Savings Trust
  3. Bpifrance

Mubadala Capital, the asset management subsidiary of Emirati sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Investment Company, wins for the second year in a row. Highlights for the LP over the qualifying period include leading the $100 million Series B financing round for Swedish e-commerce company Juni. It also participated in funding rounds for Polish cryptocurrency payments start-up Ramp and London-based Weavr, as well as UK-based online car retailer Cazoo.

Deal of the Year in EMEA

  1. Clearlake Capital Group for Chelsea Football Club
  2. Permira for Kedrion and UK-based BPL
  3. EQT for Envirotainer

One of the biggest deals in the region in 2022 was Chelsea Football Club’s new era out of Russian ownership. Clearlake Capital Group acquired the English Premier League club and related affiliates for $3.1 billion, in partnership with Todd Boehly, chair and CEO of Eldridge. The ownership consortium also included Hansjörg Wyss, founder of the Wyss Foundation, and Mark Walter, co-founder and CEO of Guggenheim Capital. The deal will aid the expansion of the club’s investment across infrastructure, technology and sports science, according to a press release from Chelsea FC.

Exit of the Year in EMEA

  1. Nordic Capital for The Binding Site
  2. Bain Capital for Fedrigoni
  3. Oakley Capital for Contabo

Nordic Capital won the EMEA Exit of the Year award for its sale of UK-based speciality diagnostics company The Binding Site, which was bought by Thermo Fisher Dynamic. Since Nordic Capital’s acquisition in 2011, The Binding Site grew fivefold. According to the firm, revenues grew from £40 million ($48 million; €45 million) to close to £200 million; the number of tests completed increased to more than 40 million, from less than 10 million previously; and employees more than doubled from 500 in 2011 to more than 1,000 in 2022.

Fundraise of the Year in EMEA

  1. Nordic Capital
  2. Hg
  3. Motive Partners

Nordic Capital was recognised in this category for its 11th flagship fund, which gathered €9 billion, exceeding its €8 billion target and raising around €3 billion more than its predecessor vehicle. The fund closed in just nine months and has a 100 percent re-up rate, with some 30 percent of commitments from new LPs, according to the firm.

Firm of the Year in Africa

  1. Helios Investment Partners
  2. Development Partners International
  3. AfricInvest

Helios Investment Partners scooped this award for the fourth consecutive year since 2019 and marks its fifth win since 2015. The firm had several exits in the past year including its 25 percent interest in the holding company of Axxela, the largest private sector gas distributor in Nigeria; in Interswitch, a Nigeria-based payments firm; and in petroleum company Vivo Energy. The firm also secured an ESG-linked facility for Helios Investors IV last year.

Firm of the Year in Benelux

  1. Waterland Private Equity Investments
  2. Ergon Capital
  3. Parcom Capital Management

Buy-and-build specialist Waterland Private Equity Investments picked up more than half of the votes in this category. Waterland gathered €4 billion across two funds over the qualifying period – €3.5 billion for its ninth flagship fund and €500 million for Partnership Fund I, which re-invests in assets sold by its own funds. Transactions for Waterland over the past few months include its majority stake acquisitions of product comparison platform LionsHome and logistics company Duvenbeck.

Firm of the Year in CEE

  1. CVC Capital Partners
  2. Horizon Capital
  3. Abris Capital Partners

This is CVC’s first win for this category. Deals for the firm in the region over the qualifying period include the take-private of London-listed Stock Spirits, one of the leading producers and distributors of branded spirits in CEE and Italy, and its investment in FutureLife, a Prague-headquartered pan-European provider of IVF and related genetics services.

Firm of the Year in France

  1. Ardian
  2. CVC Capital Partners
  3. Eurazeo

Ardian is back to claim the top spot for Firm of the Year in France for 2022. It gathered $23 billion across strategies as of end-September 2022, which included four fund closes in its private credit and infrastructure vehicles, among others. During the qualifying period, the firm raised nearly $5.3 billion for its eighth infrastructure secondaries fund and made 42 direct transactions representing $2.2 billion of committed capital.

Firm of the Year in Germany

  1. KKR
  2. Triton Partners
  3. CVC Capital Partners

KKR takes the top spot in this category, thanks in part to two new investments in Germany – Körber Supply Chain Software and cloud infrastructure provider Contabo, as well as a number of add-ons. In July 2022, global information services providers NielsenIQ and KKR portfolio company GfK announced a definitive agreement to merge. To date, KKR has deployed more than €13 billion in equity across roughly 30 transactions in Germany.

Firm of the Year in Iberia

  1. CVC Capital Partners
  2. AltamarCAM Partners
  3. Magnum Industrial Partners

A first-time win in this category, CVC has deployed €5 billion across more than 20 investments in the Iberian region since its inception. Over the past year, the firm has been investing in the region from CVC Fund VIII – the firm’s €21.3 billion Europe-focused buyout fund – including the acquisition of Neolith from Investindustrial in April. CVC has multiple portfolio companies in Iberia, including Spanish football governing body La Liga Impulso and olive oil producer Deoleo.

Firm of the Year in Italy

  1. Carlyle Group
  2. Investindustrial
  3. CVC Capital Partners

Over the last 12 months, The Carlyle Group has invested or committed more than $973 million in Italian companies, both as a PE sponsor and a lender, helping it take home Italy’s firm of the year award. Major transactions include Carlyle Europe Partners agreeing to acquire OCMIS Group, a leading agri manufacturer, and the acquisition of Italian-headquartered Dainese Group, a global leader in the manufacture of protective equipment for motorcycling. In March 2022, Carlyle’s Global Credit platform provided the debt financing package for Serie A football club Atalanta BC, funding a stake in the club bought by a consortium led by Bain Capital’s co-chairman Stephen Pagliuca.

Firm of the Year in MENA

  1. Gulf Capital
  2. Development Partners International
  3. NBK Capital Partners

Gulf Capital won 2022’s firm of the year in the Middle East and North Africa having increased EBITDA growth across all its exited investments by 241 percent collectively up to the end of the reporting period. Indeed, 94 percent of all value creation in its portfolio has been attributed to EBITDA expansion. The focus on operational improvement and EBITDA growth has been especially profound in 2022: Gulf Capital sold olive oil producer and exporter CHO Group in October, after a partnership that saw CHO’s revenues grow by around a third. Gulf Capital also launched new offices in Cairo and Singapore in 2022.

Firm of the Year in the Nordics

  1. Nordic Capital
  2. CVC Capital Partners
  3. FSN Capital Partners

For the second year in a row, Nordic Capital has taken the prize for Firm of the Year in the Nordic region. The firm reached a €9 billion final close for Fund XI last October, exceeding its €8 billion target for the flagship fund. Transaction highlights included the firm’s acquisitions of Swedish vehicle glass repair and replacement provider Cary Group and Danish speciality insurer RiskPoint. The firm made 40 new hires over the past 12 months, including 18 to the investment team.

Firm of the Year in Switzerland

  1. Partners Group
  2. Ufenau Capital Partners
  3. Unigestion

Partners Group has once again come out as Firm of the Year in Switzerland, having won the award every year since 2017. Deal highlights included taking a control equity stake in digital services provider Cloudflight, a significant minority stake in CVC-owned software platform VelocityEHS, and the acquisition of digital services provider Version 1. The firm also exited a 50 percent stake in utilities services company United States Infrastructure Corporation to an investor group led by Kohlberg & Company. At the time, the firm said the deal valued USIC at $4.1 billion.

Firm of the Year in the UK

  1. Hg
  2. CVC Capital Partners
  3. ECI Partners

Winning in this category for the third year in a row, Hg had an impressive 2022, bolstering its employee roster by around 30 percent year on year to more than 380 people. It raised around $17 billion for software and tech-service-focused funds, including Hg Saturn 3, which closed on $11 billion in August. The London firm has returned around $8 billion to clients in the year to end-October, making it easy to see why many readers chose Hg for the win in the UK.

Fund of Funds Manager of the Year in EMEA

  1. LGT Capital Partners
  2. HarbourVest Partners
  3. Munich Private Equity Partners

Switzerland-headquartered firm LGT Capital Partners raised $4.3 billion in PE commitments in Europe and deployed $3.1 billion to take home the award for Fund of Funds Manager of the Year in EMEA. Its Europe-based team grew to more than 240 professionals across the year. The firm stood out for holding the final close for its oversubscribed fund Crown Impact on $550 million, which has so far committed $148 million across 21 impact investments.

Placement Agent of the Year in EMEA

  1. Evercore
  2. Campbell Lutyens
  3. Rede Partners

Evercore won across the board in this year’s PEI Awards, both regionally and for its secondaries business. The bank’s private funds group helped clients hold final closes on eight funds over the past year, representing around $40 billion. Additionally, the team has helped clients hold interim closes on almost $40 billion. This is the third year in a row Evercore has won in this category.

Law Firm of the Year in EMEA (Fund Formation)

  1. Kirkland & Ellis
  2. Clifford Chance
  3. Macfarlanes

Kirkland & Ellis secured sweeping wins across all law firm categories this year bar one. The legal powerhouse advised clients on some notable European funds during the period, including Nordic Capital XI, Inflexion Buyout Fund VI, EQT Growth, EQT Ventures III and Pollen Street Capital IV. The firm’s European fund formation team advised clients on more than $302 billion of capital commitments during the period, an increase of more than $80 billion from the previous year, according to Kirkland.

Law Firm of the Year in EMEA (Transactions)

  1. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett
  2. White & Case
  3. Goodwin

This is Simpson Thacher & Bartlett’s ninth win in the PEI Awards since inception. The firm’s notable deals in the 12 months to end-October include advising Blackstone on its sale of UK seaside resort chain Butlin’s. It also advised Silver Lake on cloud management company Cegid Group’s €6.8 billion combination with Spain’s Grupo Primavera, and Stonepeak on its €1 billion minority interest in London-headquartered Inspired Education Group.

Lender of the Year in EMEA

  1. Blackstone
  2. 17Capital
  3. Tikehau Capital

This is Blackstone Credit’s inaugural win in this category. Its European private credit team invested and committed more than €6 billion over the period, representing one of its strongest deployment years in the unit’s 16-year history. Its deal highlights include leading a €1 billion-plus financing for EQT’s buyout of Envirotainer, and leading a proprietary deal to create Fidelis MGU.