US private equity and real estate investment firm Landmark Partners has reached agreement with French private equity firm Natexis to jointly pursue secondary acquisitions of partnership interests and direct investments based in Europe.
The two firms plan to combine their respective deal sourcing, due diligence, and analysis capabilities to acquire buyout, venture capital, and mezzanine assets. The two firms expect to invest around $100m apiece over the next two years, investing on an equal basis.
“We have been aware of Natexis for a long time and share a similar philosophy and position in the marketplace,” said Tony Roscigno, partner at Landmark, which will invest from its latest fund, Fund XI, which held a first close late last year on $450m. The firm hopes to close the fund later this year on $750m.
The two firms believe that the majority of secondary opportunities will come from Europe’s large financial institutions looking to re-evaluate their private equity allocations, with Roscigno feeling especially positive about opportunities in the European market. “We are currently looking at two or three deals and there is a healthy pipeline beyond that. It is currently a matter of ensuring we pay a fair price for the portfolios we are looking to acquire.”
Roscigno said that he anticipated making smaller investments than the firm’s traditional $20m to $100m investment range, a reflection of the smaller valuation of portfolios available in Europe.
Natexis has predominantly focused on venture capital, growth and buyout opportunities and manages E2bn of private equity in Europe, Asia, and South America. “This agreement will allow us to enter into the field of secondary acquisitions with the experience in secondary deals brought by Landmark,” according to Francois Bernardeau, executive vice president of Natexis Private Equity International.