Olympus Partners has signed an agreement to buy an equity stake in the group from current majority owner Irving Place Capital, which currently holds around a 70% position. Olympus also would partially repay existing Churchill lenders. Expect a significant haircut on the equity (which will include an earn-out that basically doubles the initial payment), and a lighter discount on the debt. There also is the possibility of Olympus pumping in some extra working capital, but that’s pure speculation on my part.
Reps from Churchill, Olympus and Irving Place all declined comment.
This isn’t the first time that Olympus Partners has expressed interest in mid-market banking. Back in 2008, the Stamford, Conn.-based firm considered launching its own senior lending group, before deciding the startup costs would be too high. Instead, it created a created a vehicle called Neptune Financial, which bought more than 100 small positions in broadly-syndicated loans via the secondary market.
It is important to emphasize that while Olympus and Irving Place have signed a deal, it has not yet closed.