Third time lucky for Carlyle Japan following Chimney IPO


Global private equity firm Carlyle has completed its first Japanese IPO of the year by listing restaurant operator Chimney, following two failed attempts with other companies.

The firm offered 7.9 million shares in Chimney, or 45 per cent of its holding, plus a seven per cent over-allotment.

Chimney specialises in Japanese style pub-restaurants known as Izakaya, operating under main brand names such as Hananomai and Sakanaya Dojo.

The group had 690 stores across Japan at the end of November.

Carlyle took Chimney private in 2009 through an MBO, which was reported at the time to be worth JPY21bn ($231.7m).

After relisting, Carlyle’s managing director Hiroyuki Otsuka plans to continue to serve as an external director to support Chimney’s long-term development.

Carlyle Japan managing director Tamotsu Adachi said, “From its inception, Chimney has been a company with outstanding brand power, product capabilities and corporate culture.

“The factor that enabled Chimney to relist was the very strong relationship of trust built between Carlyle and Chimney’s management team and all its employees.

“It was this relationship of trust that enabled the speedy implementation of bold measures and achievement of the MBO’s original objectives.”

In September Carlyle shelved plans to raise up to JPY43.4bn ($557m) through an IPO of Japanese ball bearing maker Tsubaki Nakashima, and in April was forced to cancel its IPO of LCD glassmaker AvanStrate due to weak market conditions.

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