Permira gets into secondaries via fund acquisition of AltamarCAM

The large minority transaction is a rare example of a GP stakes purchase via a non-dedicated fund.

AltamarCAM Partners, the 10th largest secondaries firm in Europe by fundraising, has agreed to become a Permira portfolio company in an unusual example of a GP stake transaction via a fund.

The Madrid-headquartered firm, which is seeking €1.3 billion for its ACP Secondaries 5 fund, will sell a 40 percent stake in its management company to the London-headquartered buyout, growth and credit firm, according to a statement.

“For us, it’s beautiful because you get someone that adds value, someone that will open their investor base for us to convince them that our products are great, and [whose] brand will help us internationalise,” José Luis Molina, managing partner and chief executive at AltamarCAM, told Secondaries Investor. 

Bilateral discussions with Permira began four years ago and were thrown off by the covid-19 pandemic, he added.

Permira will have no involvement in the day-to-day activities of AltamarCAM and the firm’s underlying fund activities will not be reported to the LPs in Permira’s Growth Opportunities II fund, which is making the acquisition, Molina said.

PGO II LPs include fund of funds firms such as abrdn, according to data from affiliate title Private Equity International.

The transaction is unusual because GP stakes deals are typically the preserve of specialists such as Blue Owl’s Dyal Capital Partners, Goldman Sachs Asset Management’s Petershill or Blackstone’s Strategic Capital Holdings. That is in part because these investments often rely on stable revenues from the underlying GPs rather than barnstorming exits and generally comprise smaller stakes – typically between 10-20 percent – than Permira’s large minority of 40 percent.

Permira is Europe’s fourth-largest private equity firm by fundraising, according to PEI‘s annual fundraising ranking, the PEI 300.

The transaction allows four passive minority partners that acquired a combined 37.5 percent stake in Altamar in 2012 to exit their holdings, according to Molina.

The firm is mulling a potential IPO down the line, with Madrid, Paris and Amsterdam among possible locations, Molina added.

AltamarCAM’s secondaries returns were of particular attraction to Permira, in addition to its private banking avenues, internal technology and SMAs, which now number more than 35, according to Molina.

Examples of secondaries firms selling minority stakes in themselves include Coller Capital, which in April sold an almost 25 percent stake to Hunter Point Capital. Majority acquisitions via balance sheet capital include Bridge Investment Group’s purchase of Newbury Partners, disclosed at the beginning of this year.

In June, Portfolio Advisors merged with FS Investments.

Financial details of AltamarCAM and Permira’s transaction were not disclosed.

– Carmela Mendoza and Alex Lynn contributed to this report.