Carlyle Raises Europe Tech Fund

(Reuters) – Private equity firm Carlyle Group is expected to announce on Monday that it has raised $673 million (530 million euros) for a new fund aimed at small buy-outs of European technology companies, the Financial Times said.

The fund, named Carlyle Europe Technology Partners II, will seek to acquire technology companies worth between 20 million euros and 200 million euros, focusing on Carlyle’s preferred sectors of aerospace, media, telecommunications, industry and financial services, the paper said.

“The part of the private equity market that gets reported most is the large end, where little is happening at the moment, due to the credit crunch,” the paper quoted David Fitzgerald, managing director of Carlyle Europe Technology Partners, as saying.

“At our end of the market, deals are still happening, and interestingly we can still raise debt to fund transactions,” Fitzgerald told the paper.

The new fund is due to announce its first investment later on Monday, acquiring a small UK-based aerospace technology group that supplies top aircraft makers, such as Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the paper said.

The new fund is more than twice the size of its predecessor, Carlyle Technology Partners I, a fund raised in 2006, which is now almost fully invested, the paper said.

The Carlyle Group could not be immediately reached for comment by Reuters.

Private equity firms have been hamstrung this year by the near shutdown of credit markets and as liquidity dried up in many banking systems around the world. (Reporting by Ajay Kamalakaran in Bangalore; Editing by Kim Coghill)