CAPZA launches its latest expertise Expansion
CAPZA today announced the appointment of Guillaume Basquin and Frédéric Chiche as Partners and Co-Heads of CAPZA Expansion, which is a fund dedicated to investments in French mid-cap companies. The fund has already begun investing in order to support the French economy and back the rebound of mid-cap companies, with its two initial investments in Béton Solutions Mobiles and Sogetrel.
CAPZA Expansion¹ was created following the envelope entrusted to CAPZA in May 2020 by AXA France to help rebuild French local economic activity and foster employment. Thanks to this €500 million envelope allocated by AXA France, CAPZA Expansion will support mid-cap companies everywhere in France and across all sectors.
CAPZA Expansion will be dedicated to French mid-caps mainly owned by families or management teams, with the aim of backing them in the post-pandemic rebound, either organically or through acquisitions.
CAPZA Expansion has the capacity to invest a minimum of €15 million in transactions aimed at strengthening the capital structure of companies. CAPZA Expansion differentiates itself through a “tailor-made” approach combining investments in equity, quasi-equity and a wide range of non-dilutive financial instruments.
CAPZA Expansion’s management team is led by two new Partners – Guillaume Basquin and Frédéric Chiche – who joined CAPZA at the end of January 2021 after more than 15 years in Private Equity in France and abroad.
With five investment members – including Marion de Bonneville, Thibault Chatagnon and Roxane Pauquet – the team has begun to invest the fund and has made its first investments, notably in Béton Solutions Mobiles, an independent ready-mix concrete specialist with an innovative low-carbon concrete offer, and Sogetrel, a recognised national leader in the telecoms, IP security and digital solutions market.
« With CAPZA Expansion, we are helping French mid-cap SMEs to emerge stronger from the crisis and rebuild their investment capacity with appropriate equity instruments. This is a mission that is close to our hearts and it took a highly talented team to carry it out. This is why we are very pleased to welcome renowned professional investors such as Guillaume Basquin and Frédéric Chiche to head this new strategy. They both have recognised human, financial and operational experience, which will be a key asset both for our investment teams and for the business leaders we will be supporting. » déclare Christophe Karvelis-Senn, Président de CAPZA.
« We are proud to renew our support for the financing of French companies through this initiative with CAPZA. It helps boost regional dynamism during this critical phase of economic recovery. Beyond the financial side, we believe that CAPZA’s experience and the expertise of the Expansion team are a real asset to support these companies in their development plans, including ESG topics. » Matthieu Bonte, CIO AXA France
The team will be fully staffed in March with the arrival of a new Associate who has already been recruited. In addition, the team is supported by a Senior Advisor, Christophe Fercocq, former founder of Cobalt Capital and ex-Legal & General Ventures.
Part of the management fees will be donated to AXA Atout Coeur and CAPZA For Good, which engage AXA and CAPZA employees in the service of the company through solidarity actions.
Guillaume BASQUIN – Partner & Co-Head, CAPZA Expansion
Before joining CAPZA, Guillaume had been Directeur Associé at 3i in Paris since 2006. Previously, he worked at PwC Transaction Services and in Leverage Finance at Société Générale in New York.
Guillaume had been Board member of Cerenicimo, Labco, WFCI and Loxam. More recently, Guillaume has invested for 3i in: Havea, a European leader in the natural consumer healthcare sector, for which he has led four build-ups (Aragan, Densmore, Pasquali Healthcare and Calmosine) in 3 years and Evernex, a world leader in third-party maintenance of critical IT infrastructures. His investment track- record includes as well the investments in SaniSure, a global leader in single-use technologies serving the biopharmaceutical sector and in Ionisos, a European leader in cold sterilization for the medical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries.
Guillaume graduated from ENSAM and ESCP.
Frédéric CHICHE – Partner & Co-Head, CAPZA Expansion
Before joining CAPZA, Frédéric worked for 4 years at 3i in Paris as Directeur Associé. Prior to that, Frédéric spent 8 years in investment banking (Morgan Stanley, Rothschild and ING), and more than 10 years in private equity at 3i, Providence Equity and Silverfleet Capital in Paris and London. He has also been a co-owner and partner of an independent niche investment bank in France and China.
His investment track record includes more recently the investments in Evernex, a world leader in third-party maintenance of critical IT infrastructures, which he recently participated to the combination with Technogroup, its German counterpart, and the acquisition of Storex, the South African leader; and the investment in Ionisos, a European leader in cold sterilization services for the medical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries.
Frédéric graduated from Telecom Paris and HEC.
Marion de BONNEVILLE – Director, CAPZA Expansion
Before joining CAPZA, Marion was Investment Director at Pechel in Paris since 2012. Prior to that, she worked at NextStage as an Associate.
Her investment background includes investments and exits from Private Sport Shop, Recaero, Solware and CWI. More recently, Marion was a member of the Supervisory Board of Dubbing Brothers, the European leader in dubbing for film and television. In particular, she participated in the acquisition of Film & Fernseh Synchron (FFS), one of the leading dubbing companies in Germany. She also accompanied Vernicolor, a specialist in the decoration of plastic parts for the automotive industry, in its international expansion strategy in Mexico and Tunisia.
Marion is a graduate of ESSEC.
Thibault CHATAGNON – Director, CAPZA Expansion
Prior to joining CAPZA, Thibault was an Investment Director at Creadev since 2017 and before that, an Associate at AXIO Capital.
Thibault has invested and supported companies in various sectors: training with Abilways, B2B services with Sécurinfor and D&Fi, and construction and renovation with France Accès. He also completed the sale of Helexia, an energy efficiency player, to Voltalia, a listed IPP.
Thibault is a graduate of Audencia.
Christophe Fercocq, Partner – Senior Advisor
Before joining CAPZA, Christophe was a founding partner of Cobalt Capital, an independent investment fund created in 2004. Prior to that, he was Managing Director of LGV Capital France, whose French office he opened in 1996. Christophe started his career as a financial analyst before working in the field of mergers and acquisitions with an investment bank of the Pargesa group and then joining an investment fund as a director. Board member of several French companies, Christophe has also served as a Director for a British listed company and an Italian company. He holds a Master’s degree in management from the University of Paris Dauphine.
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