Top 10 Private Equity M&A Exits of 2009

Although big deals seem to be picking up, exits–you know, the part where you make money–have not. Aside from the IPO resurgence (and then questions over whether the window has closed already), exits have not been on the table. This slideshow depicts the ten largest PE exits, globally, by M&A this year.

Get them after the jump.

[slide title=”1. ALLTEL”]
Seller: TPG and GS Capital Partners
Price: $28.1 billion
Closed: January 5
This is certainly a 2008 deal, but it’s counting toward ’09 because it closed on January 5. It was a big home run for TPG after its WaMu disaster and fund size reduction. This year the firm is trying to forget all that, forging ahead with one of the largest buyouts of 2009.
[slide title=”2. LUCITE INTERNATIONAL”]
Seller: Charterhouse Capital Partners
Price: $1.6 billion
Closed: May 28
Another 2008 deal that closed in early ’09. The firm sold its holding in Lucite, a methyl methacrylate manufacturer, to Mitsubishi Rayon Co. Charterhouse has owned Lucite since 1999.

Seller: Carlyle Group
Price: $1 billion
Closed: July 30
Carlyle Group still owns Vought, which it purchased in 2000 and combined with a company it bought all the way back in 1996. This year the firm sold one aircraft manufacturing facility this year for a whopping $1 billion. The company itself has annual revenue of approximately $1.8 billion and about 6,000 employees in eight U.S. locations.

[slide title=”4. FERRETTI SPA”]
Seller: Candover Investments
Price: $941.2 million
Closed: July 22
Candover purchased the boat and yacht manufacturing company in 2006. The company was written down and was struggling to service its debt, but this year it found a buyer in its management. A management-led investor group, including Ferretti SpAs chairman Norberto Ferretti and Mediobanca-Banca di Credito Finanziario SpA, acquired the entire share capital in Ferretti for $ 941.238 million, via a capital increase. The consideration consisted of $110.504 million and the assumption of $830 million in liabilities.

[slide title=”5. ORANJE-NASSAU GROEP BV”]
Seller: Wendel SA
Price: $838 million
Closed: May 19
An investor group, comprised of Dyas UK Ltd acquired Oranje-Nassau Groep BV, an Amsterdam- based oil and gas exploration and production company, from Wendel SA. The transaction was to include Elgin/Franklin Field, Wytch Farm  Field and and 4 other producing and development fields.

[slide title=”6. SWS NATURAL RESOURCES”]
Seller: Ion Equity
Price: $743 million
Closed: December 4
Ion Equity sold its wind generator company to Bord Gais Eireann, an Irish renewable energy company.

[slide title=”7. STURM FOODS”]
Seller: HM Capital Partners
Price: $660 million
Announced: December 21
HM Capital, which is known for its investments in the food industry, made a successful exit of its investment in Sturm Foods this week, selling it to private label food manufacturer Treehouse Foods. Reuters reported, “The deal will be funded by a combination of $400 million in new debt issuance, about $100 million through share sale and the balance from its existing credit facility.”

[slide title=”8. UNITED MALT HOLDINGS”]
Seller: Castle Harlan
Price: $655 million
Closed: November 13
Castle Harlan made an impressive return on this exit—the company’s sale earned the firm and its Australian counterpart a 4.5x return.

[slide title=”9.TRIUMPH HEALTHCARE”]
Seller: TA Associates
Price: $570 million
Closed: November 25
TA Associates, typically a growth investment firm, probably never suspected it would end up on a year-end exit list (or maybe it did, the firm had a pretty strong year). Either way, TA bought Triumph in 2004 in a leveraged deal that included $34.5 million in equity, meaning the firm reaped a rich return on this sale to RehabCare Hospital. Beyond that, TA Associates held a pair of dividend recaps, juicing its return before the sale even happened.

[slide title=”10. EASYCASH BETEILIGUNGEN”]
Seller: Warburg Pincus
Price: $425 million
Closed: November 4
Warburg sold the company easycash Beteiligungen GmbH, a Ratingen-based provider of online payment services, to Ingenico SA of France for $425.282 mil.

Special Ridiculous Mention: I know the Thomson Reuters database is just raw data that needs to be synthesized but I couldn’t help but laugh when I opened the spreadsheet and saw the third largest exit was KKR’s unusual reverse-IPO deal. Target listed: KKR. Buyer: KKR. Seller: KKR. Yikes. Clearly the weird nature of this transaction blew a couple fuses in the Thomson Reuters’ database.


View the rest of our year end coverage here.