European People Briefs, November

HCP Tempts 3i’s Marathon Man

Highland Capital Partners has lured Laurence Garrett away from 3i to support its European operations.

Garrett will become a general partner in Highland’s Geneva office, where he will focus on European technology investments.

As a 3i partner, Garrett, a distance runner, has served on the boards of many technology companies and specializes in the semiconductor and wireless tech sectors.

Boston-based Highland is hoping his expertise will contribute to a European portfolio that includes Autoquake, Glasses Direct, PhotoBox and picoChip.

Garrett joined 3i in 1994 and led investments in UbiNetics, Trigenix and Ezurio, generating an average return of 3x invested capital.

At Highland, he will work alongside Fergal Mullen and Irena Goldenberg. —Alex Derber

Bottoli Packs a Punch

Advent International’s fashion investment team has received a boost with the appointment of former Louis Vuitton CEO Marcello Bottoli.

Bottoli joins Advent’s Operating Partner Program in its London office, where he will advise on global investments in branded consumer products, fashion and luxury goods.

The 48-year-old moved from Louis Vuitton to Samsonite, another luggage brand, in 2004, leaving five years later, after overseeing Samsonite’s sale to private equity firm CVC Capital in a $1.7 billion deal.

He currently holds board positions at International Flavours and Fragrances in New York, True Religion Brand Jeans in Los Angeles and Pandora, a jewelry manufacturer in Copenhagen. —Alex Derber

Amadeus Selects IT Maestro

Amadeus Capital Partners has recruited technology guru Alex van Someren to serve as adviser on its early stage tech fund.

Van Someren was previously with Acorn Computers and had founded IT encryption company nCipher in 1996, having raised £14 million ($22.1 million) from investors. The company returned 20x that investment four years later when Van Someren led the company to a public listing on the London Stock Exchange.

Amadeus hopes he can recreate that success with its Amadeus and Angels Seed Fund, which makes seed stage investments in U.K.-based tech companies.

About half of the £10 million ($15.8 million) fund has so far been invested in six companies. —Alex Derber

New CEO Named at Mulliez PE firm

The secretive Mulliez family has chosen Bertrand de Talhouët to head Creadev, its private equity investment firm.

Talhouët joins from Indev, another Mulliez investment vehicle, which he has led since 2008 and which is merging with Creadev.

Bruno Donville had been CEO of Creadev since its formation in 2002. He leaves to join energy company Voltalis, part of the Creadev portfolio.

Creadev describes itself as an entrepreneurial investment firm rather than a standard private equity fund, promising long-term, unconditional support for its portfolio companies, with no planned exits.

It has invested in 14 companies, focusing on health and sustainable development.

The Mulliez fortune, estimated at about $22 billion, is based on controlling stakes in a number of French companies, including Auchan, the world’s third-largest supermarket group, and Decathlon, the world’s largest sporting goods retailer. —Alex Derber

Corporate Finance Expert Joins SVG

Attorney Caroline Goodall has been appointed to the board of SVG Capital.

Goodall, a former global head of corporate at Herbert Smith, has served as an advisor on some of Europe’s largest deals, including the £800 million ($1.3 billion) IPO of broadcaster BSkyB Ltd. and Grupo Ferrovial’s £450 million ($713 million) acquisition of airport services company Swissport from Candover.

Goodall will remain a consultant at Herbert Smith as she becomes an independent non-executive director at SVG.

London-based SVG Capital manages a portfolio of about £1 billion ($1.6 billion) in funds, the majority of which are managed by private equity specialist Permira, which recently acquired Hong Kong’s Asia Broadcast Satellite from Citigroup. —Alex Derber

Charlemagne Appoints African Ace

Emerging markets veteran Mark Krombas has been snapped up by Charlemagne Capital to run a new Middle East and North Africa (MENA) fund.

Krombas has almost a decade of experience investing in the MENA region, most recently at GLG partners, where he was lead manager of the Ocean Equities MENA Opportunities fund.

Charlemagne Capital specializes in equity investment in emerging markets, but also includes private equity as part of its investment strategy. —Alex Derber