Secondaries Deal of the Year in Europe

1. 3i, Goldman Sachs, Coller Capital, Glendower Capital, HarbourVest, Pantheon and others for Action single-asset deal

2. Antin, Ardian, Pantheon and Evercore for €1.2 billion infrastructure GP-led deal

3. Medicxi, Pantheon, LGT Capital Partners and Campbell Lutyens for biotech continuation fund

Coming in at €2.5 billion, including rolling LPs, this was one of the largest-ever single-asset secondaries deals, involving a high-quality asset in Dutch discount retailer Action and a host of blue-chip secondaries backers. Hellman & Friedman simultaneously acquired the stake of 3i co-investor Partners Group at the same valuation as the secondaries buyers, a novel twist on rapidly evolving single-asset technology. The deal achieved a gross multiple of 31x for exiting LPs.

Secondaries Firm of the Year in Europe

1. Ardian

2. Montana Capital Partners

3. HarbourVest Partners

In a tight contest, Ardian emerged as the top secondaries firm in Europe in 2020. The Paris-headquartered asset manager closed the largest-ever secondaries programme on $19 billion, including co-investments, backed an innovative €1.2 billion infrastructure strip sale involving France’s Antin and closed some notable private equity LP deals, including the acquisition of a $1 billion-plus portfolio from Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, which closed soon after the onset of the pandemic.

Secondaries Advisor of the Year in Europe

1. Evercore

2. Campbell Lutyens

3. Lazard

Evercore worked on most of the large GP-led deals to take place in Europe in 2020, including a $1.4 billion strip sale involving HSBC and a €1.2 billion single-asset process centred around nuclear medicine business Curium Pharma, a CapVest portfolio company. It also advised on the sale of a $1.25 billion portfolio for a London pension plan, a rare large LP deal. In all, Evercore closed or signed on more than $7 billion of European transactions last year.

Secondaries Law Firm of the Year in Europe

1. Kirkland & Ellis

Joint 2. Debevoise & Plimpton

Joint 2. Proskauer Rose

Kirkland & Ellis again came out on top in a category that has become increasingly competitive in recent years. The firm’s Europe office worked on $12.8 billion of secondaries transactions during 2020, including four preferred equity deals worth nearly $800 million. Among the closed GP-leds the London-based team advised on are the $875 million strip sale involving Chinese insurer Ping An, led by Switzerland’s Montana Capital Partners, and a GP-led process centred on Portugal’s Armilar Venture Partners.

– This article was updated to add Coller Capital to Deal of the Year involving 3i.