J.C. Flowers & Co LLC said Aug. 1 that it sold Acuon Capital to Baring Private Equity Asia. Financial terms weren’t announced. Acuon, of Seoul, is a consumer finance and leasing company with a $3.9 billion total loan portfolio and 335,000 customers.
J.C. FLOWERS AND BARING PRIVATE EQUITY ASIA ANNOUNCE SALE OF KOREAN CONSUMER FINANCE COMPANY ACUON CAPITAL
NEW YORK, NY, August 1, 2019 – J.C. Flowers & Co. LLC, a leading private investment firm dedicated to investing globally in the financial services industry, and its affiliates (“J.C. Flowers”) announced today that Acuon Capital, a South Korean consumer finance and leasing company, has been acquired by funds affiliated with Baring Private Equity Asia (“BPEA”). Terms of the transaction, which closed today, were not disclosed.
Headquartered in Seoul, Acuon is a consumer finance and leasing company with a $3.9 billion total loan portfolio and 335,000 customers. J.C. Flowers formed Acuon through the acquisition and successful merger of three lending businesses in South Korea: Acuon Capital, formerly KT Capital, acquired in August 2015; Doosan Capital, acquired in October 2015; and Acuon Savings Bank, formerly HK Savings Bank, acquired in July 2016. Under J.C. Flowers’s ownership, Acuon grew its retail consumer lending business, expanded its distribution channels, and invested in new IT systems, all while experiencing profitable growth.
“J.C. Flowers is proud to have created a successful diversified corporate and retail lending business with a strong franchise, and we are confident that the Acuon management team has found the right partner in BPEA to take the company forward,” said Thierry Porté, Managing Director at J.C. Flowers. “J.C. Flowers’s deep financial expertise in the Asian financial markets made us uniquely qualified to manage this complex deal. We are pleased with our experience investing in South Korea and we look forward to seeking other opportunities in this market in the future.”
Han Chul Kim, Managing Director at BPEA, commented, “Financial services is a core focus sector for BPEA, and we have been actively seeking opportunities within the growing consumer finance sector in Asia. We see Acuon as a rare opportunity to acquire control of a combined savings bank and a capital company in Korea. After a successful period of integration under J.C. Flowers’s ownership, we are looking forward to helping the company accelerate its growth trajectory and capitalize on the increasing demand for alternative lenders.”
Kim & Chang acted as legal counsel and Reimei Global Advisors served as financial advisors to J.C. Flowers in connection with the transaction. Arnold & Porter and Kim & Chang acted as joint legal counsels and Citigroup served as financial advisors to BPEA in connection with the transaction.
About J.C. Flowers & Co. LLC
J.C. Flowers is a leading private investment firm dedicated to investing globally in the financial services industry. Founded in 1998, the firm has invested more than $15 billion of capital in 55 portfolio companies in 18 countries across a range of industry subsectors including banking, insurance and reinsurance, securities firms, specialty finance, and services and asset management. With approximately $6 billion of assets under management, J.C. Flowers has offices in New York and London. For more information, please visit www.jcfco.com.
About Baring Private Equity Asia
Baring Private Equity Asia (BPEA) is one of the largest and most established private alternative investment firms in Asia, with total committed capital of over $17 billion. The firm runs a private equity investment program, sponsoring buyouts and providing growth capital to companies for expansion or acquisitions with a particular focus on the Asia Pacific region, as well as investing into companies globally that can benefit from further expansion into the Asia Pacific region. BPEA also manages dedicated funds focused on private real estate and private credit. The firm has a 21-year history and over 170 employees located across offices in Hong Kong, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore, and Australia. BPEA currently has over 30 portfolio companies active across Asia with a total of 158,000 employees and sales of approximately $31 billion. For more information, please visit www.bpeasia.com.