Change Capital… Changes

Yeah, that headline kind of wrote itself. The Deal is reporting that Change Capital Partners, a UK-based private equity firm focused on the retail sector, has changed ownership.

This is a secondary sale of limited partner interests, but is particularly noteworthy because Change only has one outside limited partner on its €300 million debut fund. That would be the Halley family, which was once bosom buddies with Change Capital founder Luc Vandevelde. The Halleys in 2004 asked Vandevelde — former chairman of UK retailer Marks & Spencer — to serve as their representative on the board of French retailer Carrefour SA, of which the Halleys were the single largest shareholder. He soon became company chairman, but last year was ousted following a power struggle with the Halleys (reports were that he was seeking PE backers to take Carrefour private).

So it’s not terribly surprising that the Halleys have now chosen to sell their stake in Change Capital, even though the firm recently experienced a 3x return on its exit of German fashion house Jil Sander. According to The Deal, the buying consortium includes Goldman Sachs, Apollo Management and Change Capital’s principals (include Vandevelde). The Halleys were advised by Société Générale.

ners’ principals, a PE unit of Goldman Sachs & Co. and Apollo Management International LLP teamed up to buy out the fund, which was owned by the Halley family of France. Société Générale SA advised the sellers. No price was disclosed.