What Would A Candover Wind-Down Look Like?

News of a potential wind-down from UK buyout firm Candover raises the question of what such a situation would actually entail.

A run-off means the firm won’t raise new funds and basically manage its existing companies till they can be sold. Clearly it’s difficult to retain talent at a firm with no prospects of raising a new fund. In today’s job market, that may be less the case, but it hasn’t been at smaller firms like J.W. Childs and Willis Stein. Both firms, which haven’t shown much evidence of future fundraising efforts, have seen top talent exit.

So if Candover begins losing managers, it would seem to follow that the best move is to sell off as many of the companies as possible. It’s all very hypothetical at this point, but is Candover’s portfolio up for grabs? Would there be buyers for the companies? Take a look at exactly what those funds include below.

But first, let’s look at the handful of PE firm wind-downs we’ve seen. The most well-known is that of Forstmann Little. The firm basically stopped making new investments a few years ago after a nasty battle with the State of Connecticut over some bad bets in the telecom sector. There’s also or Adler & Shaykin, a buyout firm from the early LBO days which stopped investing in the early ‘90s. Adler Shaykin alumni include Arlington Capital founder Jeffrey Freed, Advent International’s David Mussafer, and former WaMu CEO Alan Fishman. There’s also Questor Management and Heartland Industrial.

  • Acertec, an industrials company purchased in 1999
  • ALcontrol, a financial services company purchased in 2004.
  • Alma Consulting, a Financial services company purchased in 2007
  • Aspen Insurance, a financial services company purchased in 2002
  • Capital Safety Group, an industrials company purchased in 2007
  • DX Group, a support services company purchased in August 2006
  • Equity Trust, a financial services company purchased in 2003
  • EurotaxGlass, a support services purchased in 2006
  • Expro, a support services company purchased in 2008
  • Ferretti SpA, an industrials company purchased in 2006
  • Gala Coral, a leisure company purchased in 2003 and 2005
  • Hilding Anders, an industrials company purchased in 2006
  • Innovia Films, an industrials company purchased in 2004
  • ONO, a technology company purchased in 2005
  • Ontex, a health care company purchased in 2003
  • Parques Reunidos, a leisure company purchased in 2007
  • Qioptiq, an industrials company purchased in 2006
  • Springer, a media company purchased in 2003
  • Stork, an industrials company purchased in 2008
  • Technogym, a leisure company purchased in 2008
  • Wellstream, an industrials company purchased in 2003
  • Wood Mackenzie, a support services company purchased in 2005

According to data from CalPERS through last September 30, Candover’s 2005 fund returned 1.1x its money with a 4.3% IRR. Candover’s 2001 fund returned 1.9x its money with a 25.6% IRR. Candover 1997 Fund LP posted a 1.9x return with a 17.6% IRR.

Earlier: Candover Considers Wind-Down As Last Resort