Highlights

  • Q1 2021 fundraising in France saw a strong quarter with several mid-cap and large-cap firms closing new funds
  • Whilst in 2020 we saw the majority of deals put on hold between March and June due to Covid-19 and the resulting lockdown, there was a frenzy of deals post-Q3. In our view, the assets involved were often of high quality and were going for even higher valuation multiples. This resulted in an extremely active market in both Q4 2020 and Q1 2021. Unsurprisingly the majority of these deals were in the Technology, Healthcare, Infrastructure and Education sectors, due to their pandemic-proof nature
  • More recently we’ve witnessed deal volumes begin to slow down due to the majority of available deals having completed, and a shift in focus to those that could be launched in Q4 2021
  • The sentiment overall, in our view, is that the private equity industry has weathered the storm surprisingly well, and there are far fewer than expected damaged assets in their portfolios. Therefore, we can expect to see more of the same post-Q3 2021, with again a huge focus on high quality assets and a wait-and-see approach for the lower quality assets until the market returns to normal

Key deals [1]

Business & Tech-Enabled Services

  • Latour Capital FCPR has agreed to acquire a minority stake in Funecap, a French-based provider of funeral and cremation services, from Charterhouse Capital Partners, for an undisclosed consideration
  • IK Investment Partners has agreed to acquire Skill & You, a French-based education and training services provider, from Andera Partners, for an undisclosed considerationIK Investment Partners and ISAI Gestion, along with the management of LSA have agreed to acquire LSA, a French-based provider of online insurance brokerage services, from BlackFin Capital Partners, for an undisclosed consideration

Consumer, Leisure & Retail

  • L Catterton has agreed to acquire Just Over the Top, a French-based, a down jackets manufacturer and retailer, from the Gourdikian Family, for an undisclosed consideration

Healthcare

  • Initiative & Finance has agreed to acquire Grandir Nature, a French-based manufacturer of breastfeeding equipment, from BNP Paribas Developpement and JFC Holding, for an undisclosed consideration

Industrials Products & Services

  • Groupe HLD has agreed to acquire Photonis, a French-based night-vision technology company, from Ardian for a consideration of c.€370m

TMT

  • STG Partners has agreed to acquire Trace One, a French-based developer of retail and branding product lifecycle management software, from Hg, for an undisclosed consideration

2014 – 2021 YTD total deals in France, by sector[2]

Go back to our European Mid-Market Private Equity Round-Up: Q1 2021

 

References

[1] All France deals sourced from: Q1 2021 European mid-market deal report, Mergermarket, 04 March 2021 (criteria available on request)

[2] France graph sourced from: Q1 2021 European mid-market deal report, Mergermarket, 04 March 2021 (criteria available on request)