Pastures new for Alex Bance, until recently a senior figure in the Private Equity Fund Group at UBS. From May, the seasoned placement professional will be working his Rolodex from behind a desk at Cazenove, the independent investment bank and brokerage in London.
At ultra-suave Caz, Bance will be a member of the team whose core business is the marketing of quoted investment trusts to institutions. The unit is run by Angus Gordon Lennox, a managing director at the blue-blooded broker.
Gordon Lennox and his colleagues are no strangers to private equity. For a start, the quoted vehicles that Cazenove counts among its broker mandates include UK-listed private equity groups such as Inflexion Plc, Private Equity Investor Plc and a fund of funds launched last year by Martin Currie, the Edinburgh-based asset manager.
They have also tried their hands at placing a number of closed-end limited partnership structures in the recent past. These include RVC Europe, the formerly Reuters-owned VC fund run by John Taysom, and Englefield Capital, a mandate that Cazenove worked on last year together with Merrill Lynch, until the newcomer mid-market firm effectively abandoned its fundraiser upon receipt of a €650 million cheque from Bregal, the Brenninkmeijer family office.
Bance's appointment is a clear signal that the firm now wants to do more in the asset class, at a time when European private equity fundraising is picking up.
The former UBS man won't take long to get his arms around the Cazenove way of selling investment product to institutional clients: UBS' private equity funds business, led by Richard Allsopp, which today is among the leading players in the fund placement industry, in the late 1990s grew out of the quoted funds distribution business of S. G. Warburg, an operation similar to Cazenove's. Bance was part of this process from the beginning.
Neither is he likely to worry much about the wisdom of his career move should Caz soon become the subject of a takeover – even if the suitor turns out to be Deutsche Bank, as UK newspapers recently speculated (Deutsche closed its own fund placement unit a year ago as part of its overall withdrawal from private equity). After all, Bance has settled into a job while his new employer was being acquired before. He joined Warburgs in 1995 – very shortly after the old merchant bank had been bought by Swiss Bank Corporation.
WARBURG PINCUS ADDS TO SENIOR ADVISOR PANEL
US private equity firm, Warburg Pincus has appointed Sir Alec Broers to advise on the firm's investment activities in the information and communication technology sector.
Broers is ex-vice chancellor of Cambridge University and worked for computer hardware provider IBM for 20 years in research and development. Broers is also currently an outside director of Vodafone, the UK telecommunications group and joins a panel of existing senior advisors including Sir Christopher Bland and Derek Bonham, who joined in February.The firm is currently investing internationally from two funds, Warburg Pincus International Partners, a $2.5 billion (€2.1 billion) fund and the $5.3 billion Warburg Pincus Private Equity VIII fund and was recently co-investor alongside Bain Capital and Silver Lake Partners in the $2.05 billion acquisition of a production software division of EDS, reckoned to be the largest-ever technology private equity deal.
IK APPOINTS NEW DIRECTOR IN SWEDEN
Nordic private equity firm Industri Kapital has announced the appointment of a new director. Samir Kamal will join the Stockholm office in August 2004 to source and manage new investments in the Swedish market. 39-year-old Kamal joins from Carnegie, an independent Nordic investment bank, where he held a senior role in the investment banking division, responsible for business origination and project management. Kamal, who spent nine years at Carnegie, will join IK's 13-strong Stockholm office, which is headed up by company chairman and chief executive, Björn Savén. IK has recently completed two Swedish realisations with the March IPO of Oriflame Cosmetics and the disposal of its shareholding in Nobia AB, the kitchen manufacturer, in February.
AUGUSTA & CO BUILDS EUROPEAN TEAM
The independent investment bank specialising in corporate finance and capital markets services to midmarket clients in Europe, has taken steps to build its team operating across the UK, Germany and France. The firm, which was established in 2002, has appointed Thomas Warnholtz, the former country head for Germany, Switzerland and Austria at Intermediate Capital Group Plc, the European debt provider where he spent seven years. Joining Augusta as partner, Warnholtz will be focused on structured finance and leveraged debt mandates. Also joining as partner is Gerard Sanders, who has spent 22 years in European investment banking working for West LB Panmure and Lazard in Paris and London. Sanders will be responsible for Augusta's French operation, concentrating on capital markets and advisory mandates as well as advising French institutions on private equity fund placement and secondary trading of limited partnership interests.
In addition to its mid-market corporate finance focus, the firm has also developed specialist knowledge in the European renewable energy sector. In January, it completed an assignment advising UK-based private equity firm Englefield Capital and First Islamic Investment Bank on a £400 million ($732 million; €582 million) transaction involving the purchase of the wind farm portfolio of RWE Innogy, the largest green power generating business in the UK. In Germany, the firm is currently advising a family-owned manufacturing business on a large-scale recapitalisation.
CVC STRENGTHENS UK ADVISORY BOARD
CVC Capital Partners, the pan-European private equity firm, is the latest firm to seek advice from nonindustry senior professionals. Leading businessmen Sir Ian Robinson and John Sunderland have been appointed to the CVC UK advisory board to advise the firm on deals in the UK. Robinson, 61, is currently chairman of Hilton Group and was chief executive of Scottish Power from 1995 t o 2001. Sunderland, 58, joined Cadbury Schweppes, the beverage and confectionery manufacturer in 1968, became chief executive in 1996 and executive chairman in 2003. He is also deputy president of the Confederation of British Industry. “They combine significant corporate experience in the utility, engineering and consumer goods sectors which will be invaluable as we assess new opportunities going forward,” said Michael Smith, chairman of CVC. CVC's UK advisory board already includes Sir Clive Thompson, the chairman of Rentokil Initial, and Sir Trevor Chinn, the current chairman of Kwik Fit.
HEMMINGS IN CHARGE OF PE AT PWC
PwC Corporate Finance has appointed London-based partner Chris Hemmings as head of its European private equity team. Hemmings, a private equity partner since 1995, succeeds Peter Jacobs, who will remain within the business to develop major corporate finance relationships and to work with the group's advisory board. Jacobs headed up the private equity group for the last 12 years, building a team of 70 professionals in 13 European countries. Since 1998, the team has advised on 200+ transactions, totalling over $26 billion (€21.4 billion). PwC has also announced the appointment to its private equity group of partner Tony Kenny to lead the group's marketing and business development. Malcolm Wren has also been promoted to director in the private equity team.
EX-3I CEO TAKES UP NEW NON-EXEC POST
Hotbed, the UK-based private equity network, has announced the appointment of Ewen Macpherson, former chief executive of 3i, as a non – executive director. Macpherson, the former CEO of 3i, where he served for 27 years, left the company in 1997 and will be reunited with a number of ex-3i colleagues at Hotbed. Hotbed was launched in 2002 to provide opportunities for private individuals who can invest in a wide range of private equity investment opportunities. The company has attracted over 320 members globally, approximately 300 of which are private individuals, the remainder a mixture of VCTs, family trusts and pension funds. Since its launch, Hotbed has invested £23 million (€35 million; $42 million) in 20 investments.
ISIS HIRES NEW PORTFOLIO DIRECTOR
ISIS Equity Partners has appointed Steven Dunne as portfolio director to manage an unquoted portfolio of investments, focussing on strategy reviews, shareholder value and exit planning. Dunne's previous experience includes spells at HSBC Investment Bank and Grenadier Capital, where he was an owner manager. He has also worked in corporate development roles within quoted companies P&O and Wassall plc. Adam Holloway, head of portfolio management at ISIS commented “Steven's experience further strengthens ISIS' role in adding value to the companies we invest in, demonstrating the importance we attach to portfolio management and generating high returns from exits”.