German private equity firm ECM Equity Capital Management has reached a final close of its new fund German Equity Partners IV. GEP IV reached its hard cap of 230 million euros ($289.6 million), exceeding its 200 million euros target.
ECM Equity Capital Management (“ECM”), an independent German private equity firm headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, held a final closing of its new fund German Equity Partners IV (“GEP IV”) on 29 June 2012. GEP IV reached its hard cap of 230 million euros ($289.6 million), exceeding the 200 million euros target. The fund, which will be managed by ECM, has a typical limited partnership structure with a ten year lifespan plus the option for two successive one-year extensions.
GEP IV has significantly broadened its investor base through commitments from more than 20 investors which include fund-of-funds, insurance companies, family offices and pension funds. More than half of GEP III investors re-committed to the new fund. By geography,
GEP IV also broadened its international investor base with roughly 30% of commitments from German based institutions, 40% from the rest of Europe and the balance of 30% from North America.
GEP IV will maintain the successful investment strategy pursued in prior funds. It plans to make eight to ten investments over a five year period in target companies based in German speaking countries. Investments by GEP IV will typically be structured as management buyouts. The focus of investments will be majority equity holdings in mid-market companies with an enterprise value of EUR 20 million to EUR 100 million across a variety of sectors. With roots dating back to 1995, ECM, the manager/advisor respectively of GEP funds
I-IV, is one of the most established investors in the mid-market in Germany with historical investments focused on private company succession situations and corporate divestitures.
Christopher Peisch, Senior Partner of ECM, comments on the final closings of the new fund: “We have a philosophy of long-term partnership with our investors and are particularly pleased by the fact that a majority of capital committed to GEP IV came from existing investors. Both existing and new investors represent an extremely high level of internationally recognized quality and reputation. The fundraising process formally commenced in February this year and we are delighted to have completed it on a timely basis in an increasingly challenging environment. We continue to see attractive opportunities in our target markets based on our established strategy and have significantly expanded our team in the last year.”
ECM supports portfolio companies with both strategic support and financial experience in their transition to an independent, management-owned business. Past investments of the
GEP funds include food delivery specialist eismann and wind turbine producer Vestas. Recent acquisitions of GEP III include the restaurant chain Maredo, frozen food producer Kadi and bakery company Kamps. In August 2011, GEP III sold the logistics company
IN tIME in a secondary transaction.
Park Hill Group LLC served as placement agent to ECM. O’Melveny & Myers LLP and
SJ Berwin LLP acted as legal counsel to the fund internationally and in Germany respectively.
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ECM Equity Capital Management GmbH (ECM)
An independent private equity firm, ECM is headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. ECM served or serves as the manager of/advisor to respectively the private equity funds German Equity Partners I-IV with aggregate capital under management in excess of EUR 650 million. The investment focus is on midsized companies in the manufacturing and service sectors in addition to the wholesale and retailing industries. Preferred acquisition targets are companies with revenues of EUR 25 million to EUR 250 million. The funds typically structure their investments as management buyouts. Investment opportunities arise from ownership succession situations with privately held companies and from corporate divestitures.
On behalf of ECM:
Charles Barker Corporate Communications GmbH
Kornelia Spodzieja, phone +49(0)69 794090-40, Kornelia.Spodzieja@charlesbarker.de
Tobias Eberle, phone +49(0)69 794090-24, Tobias.Eberle@charlesbarker.de