News: People

RBS promotes Koenig as Föcking heads to EQT
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has promoted Jochen Koenig to succeed Michael Föcking as the head of the bank's leveraged finance team in Germany. Föcking has left to join Nordic private equity group EQT. Koenig, who was a founding member of the team set up in 1998, will head up the bank's operations in Frankfurt. Since its creation, the team of 16 has been involved in 31 deals, committing a total of €2bn to deals across Germany, Austria, Sweden and the Nordic markets. Koenig said that the team would continue to focus on the mid-market and larger deals in Germany. ?In 2001, Leveraged Finance Germany has supported almost half of all completed transactions [above €100m]? We will continue to concentrate on this sector.?

Meanwhile, Föcking is joining EQT Partners. According to Conni Jonsson, EQT's managing partner, the appointment comes as the firm is looking at opportunities to add a mezzanine function to its business. Jonsson said he was open-minded about what shape such a mezzanine business might take, and did not rule out that EQT might raise a dedicated mezzanine fund going forward. Föcking will be joining as partner to work with Patrick de Muynck, who was recruited in December 2001 with a background that includes several years in the leveraged finance operation of HSBC Investment Bank where mezzanine transactions were part of the brief. During his time with RBS Föcking was closely involved in structuring debt used in major continental LBOs including Messer Griesheim, Leybold Optics and Cognis. He also helped develop a new type of mezzanine product aimed at the German Mittelstand.

Pantheon extends European activities
London headquartered Pantheon Ventures, the private equity funds-of-funds manager, continues to expand its European activities with the appointment of Daniela Konrath as a senior investment professional to its Brussels team. It has also concluded an agreement with investment client Crédit Agricole Asset Management (CAAM), whereby CAAM's new €110.5m fund will invest alongside other Pantheon funds. Pantheon's Brussels office is now two years old and the appointment of Konrath is seen as an important step to extend the firm's dedicated European primary investment team. The company says that Konrath, who was previously with NIB Capital and Alpinvest in the Netherlands, will be responsible for researching primary fund investment opportunities in Continental Europe.

As the firm continues to win mandates from European investors, so it was able to report that in May that one such client, Crédit Agricole Asset Management (CAAM), announced the final close of its Green Way Private Equity Europe fund at €110.5m. Under a joint venture agreement with Pantheon, CAAM will invest the fund in parallel with other Pantheon client capital within the private equity group's European primary fund investment programme, expected to total up to €1bn a year.

Worldwide, Pantheon now employs 56 people, including 34 investment professionals, operating from offices in London, San Francisco and Hong Kong as well as Brussels. The firms' worldwide client list of some 100 institutions now includes more than 40 major European investors.

Enterprise Investors adds partner
Eastern European private equity firm Enterprise Investors has appointed Tod Kersten as a new partner. Kersten joins from Lazard, where he was a director responsible for transactions in Poland, the Czech Republic, Romania and Turkey. The appointment will see Kersten return for his second spell at the Warsaw headquartered firm, having previously worked for the Polish-American Enterprise Fund (managed by Enterprise Investors) between 1991 and 1995. Kertsen's career has also seen him work as the US Treasury adviser to Poland's minister of finance, working primarily on the privatization of Poland's Bank Handlowy.

Enterprise said that Kersten's role will be to work on exits from the firm's portfolio companies. He will also work on building and maintaining relationships with existing and potential investors in the funds managed by Enterprise Investors. Enterprise Investors has been active in Poland and the CEE region since 1990 and currently manages four funds. Polish Enterprise Fund IV, Polish Enterprise Fund, Polish Private Equity Fund I&II and Polish-American Enterprise Fund have invested almost $700m in 85 companies across Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

German appointment for Henderson Private Capital
Henderson Private Capital, the private equity arm of Henderson Global Investors the investment management subsidiary of AMP, has sought to boost its German profile with the appointment of Walter Moldan, the former managing partner of UBS Capital's German private equity operations. UBS revealed earlier this year that it was to wind down its private equity operations. Moldan, whose previous experience includes private equity and operational roles at IMM, Heller International, 3i and Heidelberger Zement, will join the Henderson European private equity team as a partner in Munich. Toby Boyle, head of European private equity at Henderson Private Capital, said the appointment would boost the firm's mid-market deal capability in Germany.

The European Private Equity team at Henderson Private Capital recently launched Henderson European Partners I, a €400m fund focusing on pan-European businesses with strong growth opportunities. The fund is to be raised in association with Feri Alternative Assets, targeting the German institutional market. Henderson said co-operation between Henderson Private Capital and Feri Alternative Assets is yet to receive antitrust approval and will be subject to clearance by the cartel office in Germany.

Royal London signs RBPE team
Royal London Private Equity (RLPE), the mid-market private equity house currently fundraising, has recruited John Dillon, Richard Caston and Duncan Johnson, all formerly at Royal Bank Private Equity (RBPE). Dillon joins RLPE as a managing director, while his colleagues come in as directors. The business, which was set up last year, is lead by David MacLellan, chief executive, and Peter Linthwaite. RLPE already manages a private equity fund portfolio valued at about £60m. In October 2001, it launched a new buyout fund that is currently looking to build on a £50m cornerstone investment from The Royal London Mutual Insurance Society. The overall target for the fund is £200m.

In leaving Royal Bank Private Equity, the captive private equity business that is part of The Royal Bank of Scotland, the trio have followed in the footsteps of Tim Farazmand, a senior figure at RBPE who departed recently after the bank announced a restructuring of the division.

DrKC appoints Hungarian director
Dresdner Kleinwort Capital (DrKC) has named Nicholas Kabcenell a new regional director for its Central and Eastern Europe team. He will be based in Budapest and will be responsible for Hungary and neighbouring countries. Kabcenell will work with Janusz Heath, head of DrKC's 15-member Central and Eastern Europe team and will be a member of DrKC's investment committee as a partner in DrKC's $225m Emerging Europe Fund. Kabcenell joins from alternative telecoms operator Carrier 1 International, where he was head of strategy and M&A from 2000 until earlier this year. Previously, he worked at Schroder Salomon Smith Barney in its London based emerging markets investment banking group with a focus on Central and Eastern Europe.

BoS hires for French LBO lending
Bank of Scotland Corporate Banking has made Olivier Boyadjian head of structured finance in Paris to bolster its position as a lender in the French leveraged buyout and M&A market. BoS has now 15 people on the ground and is keen to add to the €1bn it has lent in France since moving into the market in 1996. Stewart Livingston, the head of BoS' European corporate business, said the bank was keen to ?enhance its position as a major lender to French LBOs of all sizes.?

Barclays PE boosts infrastructure team
Barclays Private Equity (BPE) has recruited Nigel Middleton to its Infrastructure Funds division as the firm looks to increase its activity in the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) and Public Private Partnership (PPP) sectors. Middleton will join BPE in September from PricewaterhouseCoopers Corporate Finance, where he provided corporate finance advice to PwC clients, latterly advising public and private sector clients on PFI transactions. He was head of PFI/PPP advisory services for PwC in the UK. According to BPE managing director Chris Elliott, the appointment reflects an increase in PFI and PPP related activity both in the UK and in Europe.

DB Capital establishes London FoF team
If further evidence were needed that private equity funds of funds (FoFs) are continuing to surge in popularity, DB Capital Partners has announced that it has recruited Carlo Biroli to set up a FoF operation in London. The private equity unit of the bank is keen to develop its FoF activities outside of the US, and Biroli's mandate is to lead this effort. The move is seen as part of a broader effort by the group to increase the amount of third party funds that it manages, although Deutsche will typically remain a cornerstone investor. Previously Biroli was CEO of CDB Webtech, an Italian listed fundof-funds company backed by Carlo de Benedetti, the former chairman of Olivetti.

VC Pond recruits another partner
Pond Venture Partners, the UK early-stage venture capital firm, has appointed former Xerox Corporation vice president Peter van Cuylenburg as partner and advisory board member. Van Cuylenburg will be responsible for identifying emerging technologies as potential investment opportunities. In addition to his work at Xerox, he is a former vice president of Texas Instruments' worldwide computer division, as well as the former CEO of Mercury Communications. The arrival of van Cuylenburg follows the appointment of Michael Gera, former Merrill Lynch private equity group associate, who was made a partner in April.

IDG Venture Europe hires
IDG Venture Europe, the European venture capital fund of International Data Group, has hired Anil Hansjee as principal. Hansjee joins from Bear Stearns where he was vice president in Technology Investment Banking. According to Kit Gould, managing partner in London, the firm is aggressively pursing investment opportunities across Western and Northern Europe. IDG has $580m under management worldwide, of which $100m is dedicated to a fund specialising in European investments.