Terra Firma boosts team with three new MDs – Exclusive

The firm has added former Triton, First Reserve and Doughty Hanson deal makers to its bench.

Terra Firma has brought in three new managing directors as it continues to build its bench of senior investment professionals, Private Equity International has learned.

The three new managing directors, Alex Williams, Michele Russo and Jyrki Lee Korhonen, will focus on sourcing, executing and managing investments, PEI understands.

Williams joins from energy specialist First Reserve, where he spent nearly eight years as a managing director. Before that he was a director at 3i Group investing across a range of sectors.

Russo is a veteran of both Doughty Hanson and Lazard and latterly established his own GP in Milan, Opera Private Equity, to execute direct secondaries transactions.

Korhonen has joined Terra Firma from northern European firm Triton Advisors, where he spent the last 12 years, latterly as partner, doing deals across a range of sectors in Scandinavia.

The three new managing directors joined Terra Firma in April. A spokesperson for the firm confirmed the hires, but declined to comment further. 

Terra Firma has been in expansion mode recently. These three hires follow the appointments of Justin King, former chief executive of UK supermarket J Sainsbury, as vice chairman and head of portfolio businesses, and credit structuring veteran Peter Miholich as managing director.

Terra Firma has settled on an investment model in which the firm contributes at least 10 percent of the equity to each deal done or fund raised. The firm has balance sheet equity of over €1 billion and in “recent years” the firm has had pledged capital of more than €2 billion available to invest, Hands previously told PEI, but has thus far held back from investing on account of high asset prices. 

In March this year Terra Firma's chief executive officer, Tim Pryce, stepped back from the role. Pryce, who has been with the firm since its inception, remains part of the business as a managing director and member of the firm's management committee. The firm is currently running a search to fill the CEO position, as previously reported.