Former Fiat CEO Joins Advent International

Paolo Cantarella has joined Advent International as an operating partner focused on the industrial sector. He previously served as CEO of Fiat SpA between 1996 and 2002.


Advent International, the global private equity firm, today announced that Paolo Cantarella has joined the firm’s Operating Partner Programme with a particular focus on investment opportunities in the industrial sector.

Before joining Advent, Paolo held the roles of CEO of Fiat S.p.A. from 1996 to 2002; of Fiat Auto from 1990 to 1996 and of COMAU from 1983 to 1988. He was President of the European Automobile Manufacturers Association in 2000 and 2001 and has been Director of Polaroid Holding Co since July 2003. Paolo is currently a non-executive director on the boards of Iride S.p.A and Inpartner (Investitori & Partner Immobiliari). His numerous previous directorships include the Organizing Committee of the Olympic 2006 Winter Games in Turin.

Advent’s Operating Partner Programme involves experienced industrialists working with the firm in a variety of ways: sourcing investment opportunities; assisting with the due diligence process and advising on the strategic and operational development of portfolio companies. The use of operating partners is a fundamental and long-established element of Advent’s highly operational approach to investing. The programme currently includes over 50 high-level industrialists, many of whom have been involved in multiple Advent investments.

Conor Boden, Head of Portfolio Board Development, said: “Our strong operational model will be increasingly relevant in these challenging market conditions and our operating partner network plays a key role in the successful application of this operational approach. Paolo is a very well respected Italian industrialist whose extensive global experience in the industrial sector will be invaluable to Advent’s investment strategy both in Europe and across our international network. We are delighted to have him on board.”

“Paolo Cantarella, added, “Advent has a very strong track record both in Italy and globally and I am excited to be working with the firm. I look forward to combining our respective industry experience as we work together to identify potential investment opportunities in the industrial sector and enable those companies to reach the next stage of their development.”

About Advent International
Founded in 1984, Advent International is one of the world’s leading global buyout firms, with offices in 15 countries on four continents. A driving force in international private equity for more than two decades, Advent has built an unparalleled global platform of over 120 investment professionals across Western and Central Europe, North America, Latin America and Asia. The firm focuses on international buyouts, strategic restructuring opportunities and growth buyouts in five core sectors, working actively with management teams to drive revenue and profit growth in portfolio companies. Since inception, Advent has raised $24 billion in private equity capital and through its buyout programs has completed more than 250 transactions valued at over $40 billion in 40 countries. For more information, visit