Warburg hires Ziggo CEO as partner

René Obermann will join Warburg early next year to source TMT deals

US-based Warburg Pincus has hired René Obermann, the current chief executive officer of Euronext-listed Dutch cable operator Ziggo, as a partner, according to a market source. 

Obermann will join the Warburg once the sale of Ziggo to Liberty Global has been completed. That deal is likely to close early next year, the source added. 

Warburg declined to comment. 

Obermann will be responsible for sourcing deals in the telecom and communications space, as well as finding investment opportunities in Germany.

Obermann joined Ziggo in January 2014, having previously been chief executive officer at Deutsche Telekom. By that time, Warburg had already sold a portion of its interest in Ziggo; it sold its remaining stake in the business in May 2013, bringing the total proceeds for the sale to €1.7 billion.

Warburg is currently investing from its $11.2 billion Fund XI that closed last May. In June, Warburg teamed up with Singaporean sovereign wealth fund Temasek to buy 50 percent of Santander’s custody business in Spain, Mexico and Brazil.

In May, it sold California-based software firm iParadigms to Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) and Insight Venture Partners in a deal worth $752 million. In April, the firm bought payment technology company Electronic Funds Source for more than $1 billion, while in the same month it invested $70 million in Beijing-headquartered recruitment services business Liepin.com alongside Martix Partners China. It also bought aviation company Mercator in April.

In March, Warburg floated UK-based discount retailer Poundland through a listing on the London Stock Exchange, netting the firm a 4.5x return, while in February, Warburg invested $32 million in telemedicine company Specialists On Call. In January, it agreed to acquire a majority stake in Source.

Warburg, which has a portfolio of around 120 companies, has more than $37 billion in assets under management.