EUROPE IN BRIEF

ANACAP RAISES €575M FOR FINANCIALS
Financial services-focused AnaCap Financial Partners has closed its second fund on €575 million, almost double the size of its predecessor, which closed in 2006 on €300 million. The fund will continue the existing investment strategy of UK-based AnaCap's first fund, focusing on control investments in midsized financial services companies across Europe. AnaCap recently completed the first ever private equity-backed acquisition of a UK bank, acquiring Ruffler Bank, an institution that specialises in asset-backed lending and property finance as well as retail savings products.

EX TROIKA EXECUTIVES LAUNCH NEW FIRM
Giedrius Pukas, the former executive director and chief investment officer of Russia's Troika Capital Partners, and three other senior members of Troika's team have launched new private equity firm Quadro Capital Partners. Troika Capital Partners – the captive private equity arm of Russian investment bank Troika Dialog – began raising its third fund last year before the global financial crisis escalated in the third quarter of 2008. In March this year, however, parent company Troika Dialog withdrew its anchor commitment to the new fund. Troika's fundraising plans are currently on hold.

JOINT VENTURE TARGETS €2.3BN FOR CEE REGION
PPF Partners, a joint venture between Dutch asset management firm PPF Group and Italian insurance giant Assicurazioni Generali, intends to raise a fund of up to €2.3 billion this year to invest in businesses across Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States. The fund, PPF Partners's second private equity vehicle, has already garnered €1.3 billion, having been anchored by two commitments of €650 million each from PPF Group and Assicurazioni Generali.

PAI FOUNDING MEMBER SWITCHES TO BUTLER
Lise Nobre, a partner and founding team member of European buyout group PAI Partners, has left the firm to join Butler Capital Partners, the French distressed investment-focused private equity firm. Butler's Paris-based team now comprises five partners and 14 professionals. The firm has been buying distressed businesses in France for 18 years and its current portfolio includes the likes of industrial transport business Giraud and football club Paris St. Germain.

CIPIO HOLDS FIRST CLOSE
Cipio Partners, a private equity direct secondaries investor, has held a first close on €61 million for its sixth fund, which is targeting €200 million. The firm which has offices in Munich, Luxembourg and San Jose, purchased 10 venture capital investments from London-listed private equity firm 3i Group in April. A source with knowledge of the transaction said the deal was worth between €17 million and €19 million. Cipio has also begun to fundraise for Cipio Partners Fund VI in the US.

PAI'S MONIER RESTRUCTURING PLAN REJECTED
Lenders to Monier, the roofing company bought out by Paris-based private equity firm PAI Partners, have rejected a restructuring plan that would have seen the buyout house inject a further €125 million, according to a source close to the situation. The proposal from PAI, which was turned down by two-thirds of the first lien lenders, would have seen the buyout group retain 73 percent of the equity. The lenders, meanwhile, would have written off two-thirds of the debt in exchange for a minority equity stake.

FIRST CLOSE FOR ROBECO ETHICAL FUND
Robeco Private Equity has held a first close of €50 million on its second private equity fund of funds, which will focus on investments in funds that adhere to socially responsible investing principles. Robeco, a division of Dutch bank Rabobank, is targeting €250 million for Robeco Responsible Private Equity II, which will stay in fundraising for the next nine to 12 months, the firm said. Rabobank is investing 15 percent up to a maximum of €35 million in the fund.

FORCED CHANGES AT CARLYLE TECHNOLOGY UNIT
Washington DC-based private equity firm The Carlyle Group has said the head of its Carlyle European Technology Partners (CETP) unit, David Fitzgerald, had resigned for “health reasons”. CETP closed a €530 million fund for expansion capital investments in European technology businesses in November 2008. Fitzgerald has been replaced by two coheads: Robert Easton, a managing director who joined Carlyle in 2000 from UK engineering group Invensys; and Michael Wand, who is also a managing director and a longstanding member of the CETP team.

BANKRUPTCIES BOOSTING UK DEAL FLOW
Deal flow in the first quarter of this year was at its lowest level in the UK since 1986, with the lion's share of buyout activity focusing on businesses that have fallen into receivership, according to data from the Centre of Management Buyout Research (CMBOR). The first quarter saw just 88 deals with a total value of just over £2 billion (€2.3 billion; $3.2 billion), a figure that CMBOR director Andrew Burrows feels is unlikely to be bettered by the remaining three quarters of 2009. Deals such as the acquisition of pool and snooker hall operator Rileys by Greenhill Capital Partners Europe and North Atlantic Value in March contributed to the fact that during the first quarter of the year more than a third of buyouts involved private equity-backed acquisitions of bankrupt targets.