Wednesday, May 28, 2008

DowJones: Citigroup Plans To Shutter Citi Venture Capital Unit

"After purchasing Metalmark Capital LLC, Citigroup Inc. plans to shutter an internal U.S. mid-market buyout group that it launched less than a year ago.
Citigroup has parted ways with all but one of the eight investment professionals of Citi Venture Capital, with only the team's original head, William Comfort, still in place. His current role is unclear.
The bank initially gave Citi Venture Capital $500 million to invest in U.S.- based mid-market deals of between $100 million and $500 million in enterprise value. It plans to sell the portfolio of roughly $150 million in investments that the team has made so far, in companies such as Big Red Ltd., a Waco, Texas- based beverage company, and Waddington North America Inc., a Covington, Ky.- based manufacturer of plastic cutlery and plates, these people said.
One person said that the bank's stake in a London-based mid-market fund managed by Stirling Square Capital Partners LLP is also up for grabs. Stirling Square was co-founded by Comfort's son, Stuyvesant Comfort, and manages a $280 million European mid-market buyout fund, according to the firm's Web site."

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