Caisse des Dépôts spin-out nears debut fund target with staple – exclusive

The deal brings Qualium Investissement to a first close on its latest fund which has a €350m target, Secondaries Investor has learned.

Caisse des Dépôts spin-out Qualium Investissement has used a stapled deal on its 2011-vintage fund as it seeks to raise its first vehicle as an independent firm, Secondaries Investor has learned.

The Paris-headquartered buyout firm, which spun out of the French state-owned investor in April, has raised around €350 million for Qualium Fund II after buyers acquired stakes in its 2011-predecessor vehicle and committed to the latest vehicle, according to two sources familiar with the deal.

The fund’s target is €350 million but a hard-cap has not been set, according to one of the sources. The firm is expected to hold a first close “imminently”, the source said.

Secondaries Investor understands the size of the stapled deal is at least €100 million and that placement agent and advisory firm Triago is working on the process.

Qualium Fund II’s predecessor closed above its €500 million target on €520 million in April 2012 after 16 months of fundraising, according to PEI data.

Qualium announced it would launch Fund II when it spun out from Caisse des Dépôts in April. Qualium’s president Jean Eichenlaub told sister publication Private Equity International at the time the fund would have a target size of between €350 million to €400 million and would invest in French SMEs, particularly in sectors where France is a leader such as luxury goods, food, construction and aerospace.

Caisse des Dépôts was to be a cornerstone investor in the fund, Qualium said at the time.

Qualium specialises mainly in control buyouts and invests between €20 million and €75 million in French SMEs valued at between €40 million and €250 million. It has €750 million in assets under management and employs 22 people.

Stapled deals have been prevalent in Europe this year, with managers including EQT and BC Partners using the processes to help with fundraising.

Triago declined to comment. Qualium did not return a request for comment.