CVC chairman Michael Smith to retire


CVC has announced its chairman, Michael Smith, is to retire from the firm, ending a career spanning three decades from its origins as the captive private equity arm of Citicorp to its present day status as one of the world’s largest buyout houses.

Donald Mackenzie, Rolly van Rappard and Steve Koltes, three of the London-based firm’s founding partners, will take over as co-chairmen of CVC when Smith, 59, retires in January 2013.

Koltes will assume Smith’s responsibilities for investor relations, working closely with Marc St John and Nick Archer, while Mackenzie will chair the group board meetings and continue as chairman of the investment and portfolio committees.

Rolly van Rappard will continue to chair the two private equity boards focused on Europe/North America and Asia Pacific, which are responsible for the day to day management of the private equity businesses.

“Having spent 30 years in the business from its origins with Citicorp in the early 80s through to independence in 1993, and the subsequent development of the business to where it is today, I have decided to retire from CVC in January,” Smith said in a statement.

“I am very proud of what has been achieved in this time and I would like to thank CVC’s investor base for their support and the firm’s employees for their efforts, both of which have been a privilege to witness.”

On the firm’s new structure, Mackenzie added, “CVC has always been run as a partnership, making important decisions by consensus and through an executive board structure that includes all managing partners.

“This has served us well in the past and will continue in the future.

“Steve, Rolly and I have worked together as a team for more than 20 years building the business from a start-up to one of the world’s leading private equity firms.

“The firm has always invested heavily in recruitment and training and in our opinion has one of the best teams in the industry.

“This team has consistently produced best in class returns for our investors and we believe that the coming years, with so much turmoil and uncertainty about, will generate some very good new investment opportunities.

“We therefore look forward to the future with great confidence and enthusiasm.”

Smith, who joined the European arm of Citicorp Venture Capital in 1982 and negotiated the firm’s spin-out in 1993, will keep a stake of less than five per cent in CVC upon his retirement.

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