European People Briefs, December

ADIA Courts Kester

James Kester has landed a role at Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, as chief investment officer for private equity.

ADIA has earmarked between 2% and 8% of its estimated $650 billion wealth fund for private equity investments, giving Kester up to $5 billion to play with.

Previously, Kester was head of private equity for Zurich Alternative Asset Management in the United States. He joined Zurich in 2006 after six years of co-running Allianz Private Equity Partners. —Alex Derber

Mathews and Bourguignon Beef Up Bowmark

London-based Bowmark Capital has bolstered its current £265 million ($421 million) fund, Bowmark Capital Partners IV, with two senior appointments. The mid-market investor has added Richard Mathews as a partner and Dylan Bourguignon as an investment director.

Mathews previously spent 12 years with HgCapital, where he most recently led the firm’s consumer and leisure investments team, useful experience given Bowmark’s focus on business, leisure, health care, media and IT services.

Bourguignon started out as a strategy consultant, then moved into mid-market private equity investing in 2004 with roles at NBGI Private Equity and Cognetas. —Alex Derber

Dunedin Renews Williams Relationship

Private equity house Dunedin has coaxed 3i alumnus David Williams out of retirement to become a director in its London-based office. Williams will be responsible for sourcing and executing new investments for Dunedin’s £250 million ($397 million) buyout fund.

The move reacquaints Williams with Dunedin, which bought Sand Aire Private Equity—of which he had been managing director for nine years—in 2005. After leaving Sand Aire the same year, Williams served as a senior partner with Graphite Capital until his retirement in 2010. —Alex Derber

McMurdo Climbs Up Maples

Sharing a last name with Antarctica’s only settlement seems apt for an international lawyer who specializes in Cayman Islands and British Virgin Islands law.

Iain McMurdo, who has advised on the formation of almost half of all new Cayman Islands-registered private equity funds, has been promoted to head of Global Private Equity at the law firm Maples & Calder.

“We have seen a steady rise in the number of private equity funds formed in 2010 compared with 2009,” said McMurdo, who has been with Maples for several years. “As the global economy continues to stabilize and recover from recession, we are experiencing an increase in fund formations and down-stream transactions.” —Alex Derber

Scott Captains GE’s Middle East Investment

GE Capital, the finance arm of the world’s second-largest company, has promoted Paul Scott to the post of chief investment officer and head of sponsor coverage for the company’s leveraged finance business in Europe and the Middle East.

Scott takes the role after three years as head of sponsor coverage in the United Kingdom.

He will be responsible for building relationships with private equity firms, overseeing secondary market investment opportunities and further developing GE Capital’s partnership with Mubadala GE Capital. Mubadala is the investment vehicle of the emirate of Abu Dhabi, with which GE Capital formed a commercial finance joint venture in May 2009. Each side has committed $4 billion to the joint venture over a three-year period.

Before joining GE Capital, Scott worked at Merrill Lynch, Barclays and Bank of Scotland. —Alex Derber

Hasiotis Heads to Lazard

Investment bank Lazard has poached Fotis Hasiotis from Bank of America Merrill Lynch to co-head its European financial sponsors group in its London-based office.

Hasiotis has spent 15 years advising financial sponsor clients at organizations including Merrill Lynch, CIBC World Markets and Banker’s Trust. His most recent role was head of EMEA financial sponsors at Merrill Lynch, having moved to the firm’s London office in 2008.

Hasiotis will co-ordinate his efforts at Lazard with co-head Isabelle Xoual, who works in Lazard’s Paris office. —Alex Derber

Future Capital Grows Team

Alternative investment boutique Future Capital Partners has added to its real estate team as it prepares for a year of investment in the United Kingdom.

Elodie George, who previously worked at Alpha Real Capital, has joined Future Capital as a manager responsible for new and existing investments, such as the firm’s £150 million ($240 million) luxury real estate development in Budva, Montenegro.

Also, Tim Mycock joins Future Capital as manager of structured finance, after four years at CLP Structured Finance, and corporate tax specialist Aysha Banks has been named associate. —Alex Derber