Texas Pacific will open Moscow office

The increasingly global private equity giant will use a Moscow base to pursue investments throughout Russia and Eastern Europe.

Texas Pacific Group will open an office in Moscow, according to a source close to the firm.

At present the firm has not decided who will run the Moscow operation. The source stressed that the office would be “small” and an “annex to the London office”.

Texas Pacific’s Moscow operation will be used as a base from which to pursue investments in Russia and Eastern Europe. In April, the San Francisco- and Ft. Worth, Texas-based firm invested in Mey Icki, a Turkish producer of alcoholic beverages. The firm invested in the company alongside Turkish consortium Nurol-Limak-Ozaltin-Tutsab.

Texas Pacific, led by co-founder David Bonderman, has been solidifying its international operations in recent months. The firm merged with former Asian affiliate Newbridge, creating a pan-Asia arm called TPG Newbridge. Earlier this month the firm announced that Steven Schneider would move from Hong Kong to Tokyo to head up TPG Newbridge’s operations.

While the Russian and Central and Eastern European private equity markets remain relatively immature, interest in the regions has been growing. In 2003, a total of approximately $406 million (€318 million) was raised for Russia/CEE-focused private equity funds, according to the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association. Last year, the regions drew $2.7 billion in LP commitments.

Currently none of the major, global private equity firms, including The Carlyle Group and Permira, maintain offices in Russia. Last May, Carlyle abandoned an effort to raise a Russia fund due to lack of investor interest.