AXA Private Equity has named Olivier Berment as co-head of its private debt business.
Berment will work alongside fellow co-head Cécile Mayer-Lévi under the overall leadership of Vincent Gombault, member of the firm’s executive board and managing director of funds of funds and private debt.
Olivier Berment joined AXA Private Equity in 2001 to manage the firm’s turnaround and recovery activity and helped launch the mezzanine business, which is now known as private debt, in 2005.
This appointment coincides with the creation of the private debt strategic committee, comprising managing directors Olivier Berment, Cécile Mayer-Lévi and Christophe Vulliez. The committee will drive the development of AXA Private Equity’s unitranche activity, in which the private debt team has become the European market leader.
In 2011, AXA Private Equity invested around €400m through unitranche financing in Unither Pharmaceuticals, FDS Group, and Biomnis, equating to more than 70 per cent of the total amount invested through unitranche financing in France last year.
Gombault said, “In an environment of scarce credit, the appointment of Olivier Berment as Co-Head of Private Debt reflects the increasing importance of unitranche financing. The fact that we now have two joint heads of our Private Debt business demonstrates its high strategic importance to AXA Private Equity.”
AXA Private Equity underwrites or arranges financings of between €10m and €200m. Its private debt team comprises 13 professionals based in Paris, London, Milan, New York and Singapore.
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