ASIA IN BRIEF

BAIN LOSES MANAGING DIRECTOR IN JAPAN
Junichi Shiroshita, a managing director at Bain Capital's Tokyo office, left the firm at the end of April, Bain confirmed. Shiroshita was one of three managing directors for Bain in Japan. Bain now has a team of 14 professionals in the country, headed by chairman Shintaro Hori. The other two managing directors are David Gross-Loh and Yuji Sugimoto.

LIM SWITCHES FROM CDC TO PANTHEON
Pantheon Ventures, the first Western private equity investment group to raise an Asia-dedicated fund of funds, has hired Brian Lim from UK government-sponsored fund of funds CDC Group. At CDC, Lim was a portfolio director for the pan-Asian region. Prior to CDC, he spent six years at consultants Watson Wyatt where he was responsible for advising institutional investors on investment strategies and private equity allocations.

VENTURE ROUND FOR TOUCH-SCREEN FIRM
CDIB Capital has led a consortium including venture capital firms TLC Capital, Qiming Venture Partners and Mustang Ventures to invest more than RMB100 million ($15 million; €11 million) in Touchmedia, a touch-screen media technology company. CDIB Capital is an affiliate of Taiwan-based China Development Financial Holdings. Founded in 2003, Touchmedia develops interactive media for taxis and is the largest such company in China. It currently has more than 100,000 taxis under contract and operates in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen.

GRESHAM, IRONBRIDGE-BACKED FIRM INTO RECEIVERSHIP
Australian boat builder The Riviera Group, a portfolio company of Australian private equity firms Gresham Private Equity and Ironbridge, has entered voluntary receivership. Founded in 1980, Riviera designs and builds luxury yachts between 33 feet and 70 feet in length. The boats are sold in Australia and exported to more than 30 countries, with the US being a significant overseas market.

FIRST CLOSE FOR AUSTRALIAN FUND
Harbert Australia Private Equity, a private equity firm focused on lower mid-market transactions in Australia, has held a first close on its maiden private equity fund on A$40 million ($31 million; €22 million). The first close was the result of an anchor investment by its parent, Harbert Management, which is a $2.5 billion alternative asset manager based in the US. The firm has also agreed its first investment, acquiring an 18.1 percent stake in Solar Shop Australia for A$7 million. The investment values the business at A$50 million. Solar Shop is an installer of solar panel systems.

INDIAN HEALTHCARE ATTRACTS ATTENTION—
Private equity investors in India are keen to increase their pace of investment in healthcare and life science companies, according to a Venture Intelligence study. More than $2 billion has been invested in the healthcare and life sciences sector in India in the last five years, and 42 percent of private equity investors surveyed felt there was a strong opportunity in the sector in semi-urban and rural areas, according to the study. Diagnostic services, medical devices and equipment, hospital chains and wellness products and services are among the industry segments popular among private equity investors.

— AS NOVA SECURES $50M FROM GTI
GTI Group, a private equity firm investing in India and the US, will invest roughly $50 million in growth capital over the next two years in Nova Medical Centres, Suresh Soni, chief executive of Nova and a partner at GTI, said in an interview. Nova, which has opened a day care medical centre in Bangalore, is looking to expand across India. The company said that a second medical centre is already under construction in Bangalore and others are being planned across the country.

TPG BACKS CHINESE FOOTWEAR FIRM
US private equity firm TPG has entered into an agreement with Daphne International to invest RMB550 million ($81 million; €58 million) in the Chinese footwear company. Listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, Daphne manufactures, markets and distributes footwear, apparel and accessories under its own and licensed brands. In China and Taiwan, the company currently operates more than 3,000 outlets, which carry brands including ladies footwear brand Daphne, Adidas and Nike. In 2008, it made HK$493 million ($64 million; €46 million) in net profits.

KOREAN EXIT DELIVERS LUCRATIVE RETURN
Seoul-based private equity firm STIC Investments has exited its investment in Melfas, a South Korean touch sensor solution provider, by way of a trade sale to a corporate buyer. The divestment generated an internal rate of return of 72 percent and a multiple of 6.3x for the firm, according to Trevor Chan, a director at STIC Investments.

LOMBARD ACQUIRES STAKE IN THAI RETAILER
Lombard Investments, which has offices in the US, China and Thailand, has invested an undisclosed sum in Robinson Department Store, a retail operator listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand. The firm has acquired 48 million shares in Robinson from Farallon Capital Management, a US hedge fund. The amount paid was undisclosed but believed to be around THB396 million ($11 million; €8 million). Robinson has 21 retail outlets in Thailand, of which 10 are located in Bangkok. Its outlets sell cosmetics, clothing, leather products, kitchenware, automobile accessories, toys and other children's products.

NEW FUND TO TARGET CHONGQING
Etech Capital and Yufu Assets Management Company intend to establish a private equity joint venture to raise a RMB5 billion ($764 million; €540 million) fund. At least 25 percent of the fund's capital will be invested in Chongqing, with the remainder invested in China including Hong Kong and Taiwan. Etech Securities is an Asia-focused bank headquartered in Pasadena in the US with offices in Los Angeles, Seoul, Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong and Taipei. Yufu Assets Management Company is based in Chongqing, the largest and most populous of China's provincial municipalities.

OIL AND MUSTARD FIRM SECURES BACKING
Indian edible oil company KS Oils is raising INR2.33 billion ($49 million; €36 million) from private equity firms New Silk Route, Citigroup Venture Capital International and Baring Private Equity Asia. The capital will be raised through the issue of equity shares and convertible warrants, according to a KS Oils spokesman. Headquartered in Morena in central India, K S Oils produces a range of mustard and refined oils. The company is the largest processor of mustard seeds in the country, according to its website.

$20M FOR GAMING BUSINESS
China-focused venture capital firm IDGVC Partners and Hong Kong-based venture firm Infiniti Capital are investing $20 million in One Net Entertainment, a developer and operator of wireless gaming applications. Beijing-based One Net develops and co-develops content and also uses licenced content on its gaming websites.

CVCI HEAD RETIRES
Gordon Clancy, managing director and region head for Greater China and Asia Pacific at Citi Venture Capital International in Hong Kong, has retired. Clancy joined CVCI's Asian business in 2001. Prior to that, he was responsible for the firm's private equity business in Africa, Central and Eastern Europe and the Middle East. The firm declined to provide any information on who might fill his former role.

THAI PENSION FIRES INVESTMENT CHIEF
Visit Tantisunthorn, the former secretary general of Thailand's Government Pension Fund, has left the THB390 billion ($11 billion; €8 billion) pension, a source close to the matter confirmed. His resignation was rejected in early June and Tantisunthorn was fired instead amid allegations of misconduct, Sathit Limpongpan, chairman of the GPF, told the Bangkok Post. He is under investigation by the country's Public Sector Anti-Corruption Commission for alleged insider trading, according to the source.

TEMASEK AND HOPU BUY CHINA CONSTRUCTION BANK STAKE
Bank of America has reportedly sold a stake of about 6 percent in China Construction Bank to investors including Singaporean sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holdings and Chinese private equity firm Hopu Investment Management for $7.3 billion. The US bank sold about 13.5 billion shares at HK$4.2 ($0.54; €0.40) each, people familiar with the matter told the Financial Times. It retains a 10.6 percent stake in the Chinese bank. Temasek already owns a 5.6 percent stake in the bank, the report noted, while Hopu Investment Management is a new investor.