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Soros Private Equity regroups as TowerBrook

Members of the Soros Private Equity team have spun out of George Soros’ money management firm to form TowerBrook Capital Partners, a $1.3bn transatlantic private equity firm.

Following reports last year of a possible spin out, the Soros Private Equity team yesterday officially broke away from the $12.8 billion (€10 billion) Soros Asset Management Group to form TowerBrook Capital Partners, a transatlantic private equity firm with $1.3 billion (€1 billion) of assets under management.

TowerBrook, with offices in London and New York, will still be headed by co-chief executive officers Neal Moszkowski and Ramez Sousou. Frank Sica, the former Morgan Stanley investment banker who started the buyout division, is staying at Soros, according to the firm.

The spin-outs are an effort to bring the firm back to its core activity as a hedge fund manager.

The spinout comes six months after billionaire George Soros announced that he would be handing over greater control of his money management firm to his sons, Robert and Jonathan. As part of the announcement, Soros also said his real estate, credit and buyout investment united would be spun off.

In the memo sent to investors in October, Soros said that the spin-outs are an effort to bring the firm back to its core activity as a hedge fund manager.

According to its Web site, TowerBrook pursues control stakes in North American and European middle-market companies. The firm invests primarily in leveraged buyouts and buildups, and distressed situations. On occasion, TowerBrook pursues “opportunistic, non-control growth situations.”

TowerBrook’s sector expertise includes healthcare, telecommunications, media, chemicals, utilities/energy, certain industrial sectors and retail and consumer services, the Web site said. Some of its recent portfolio investments include Spheris, a medical transcription company; and CSTV Networks, one of the largest US media companies dedicated to college sports, comprising College Sports Television and College Sports Online.

Among TowerBrook’s advisors are David Neeleman, chairman and CEO of JetBlue Airways; and David Checketts, former president and CEO of Madison Square Garden.