Permira Loses Japan Chief

TOKYO (Reuters) – European private equity fund Permira said on Monday that the co-head of its Japan operations had left the firm, at a time when buyout funds are struggling to strike deals.

Tomoya Shiraishi left the firm last month, said Alex Emery, who will now be sole head of Permira in Japan. Shiraishi left for his own reasons and did not have immediate plans for other work, Emery told Reuters.

London-based Permira, which opened shop in Tokyo in July 2005, agreed to buy Japanese agrichemical company Arysta LifeScience Corp for US$2.2bn in 2007, but it has not made any investments in Japan since then.

Global acquisitions by private equity firms tumbled 70% to US$231bn last year, according to Thomson Reuters.

The private equity industry has been hammered by the global credit crunch and the financial crisis. Permira last month proposed a 60% cap on commitment to its €11.1bn buyout fund.

Shiraishi joined Permira in 2005 after spending about 20 years at buyout firm Jafco Co, an affiliate of Nomura Holdings Inc.

Emery, who co-lead Permira with Shiraishi, joined Permira’s London office in 2002 and moved to Tokyo in 2005.