Qualium spins out from France’s CDC

The new firm will try to raise up to €400m for its debut independent fund, said the firm’s President Jean Eichenlaub.  

Caisse des Dépôts, a state-owned investor in French regional economic development, has spun out its buyout arm, Qualium Investissement, to Qualium’s current management.

This new independent entity will launch a fund, Qualium Fund II, with Caisse des Dépôts as a cornerstone investor. The new fund will invest in French SMEs and have a target size of between €350 million to €400 million, Qualium’s president Jean Eichenlaub told Private Equity International.

It will target sectors in which France is a leader, such as luxury goods, food, construction and aerospace.

The management team has managed third-party capital before: its 2012-vintage Qualium Fund, raised €520 million from a pool of 30 investors. The new fund will initially target re-ups from that investor base.

Qualium Investissement specialises mainly in control buyouts, investing between €20 million and €75 million in French SMEs valued at between €40 million and €250 million. It has €750 million in assets under management and employs 22 people.

The management team now has acquired 70 percent of the firm with Caisse des Dépôts maintaining a 30 percent share. The management team acquired the stake with their own capital.