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2 December 20206 minute read

Supporting innovative businesses across Europe

DLA Piper advises Claret Capital Partners and Harbert Management Corporation on the first closing of a EUR300m Luxembourg alternative investment fund

DLA Piper recently advised Claret Capital Partners (“Claret”) and Harbert Management Corporation ("Harbert") on the closing of a significant transaction. The deal enabled Claret to take full ownership and control of the general partners of Harbert European Growth Capital ("HEGC") investment funds, including Harbert European Growth Capital Fund I, L.P. ("HEGCF I"), Harbert European Growth Capital Fund II, SCSp ("HEGCF II") and the newly launched Harbert / Claret European Growth Capital Fund III, SCSp ("HEGCF III").

DLA Piper also assisted Claret and Harbert on the structuring and setting up of Harbert / Claret European Growth Capital Fund III (“the Fund”), the first Claret’s fund independent from Harbert. The Fund will invest through secured loans in lower middle market growth companies located throughout Europe, with an emphasis on Northern and Western Europe operating within the software, E-commerce, medical devices, biotech, energy efficiency, electronics, internet, diagnostics and specialty pharmaceuticals sectors.

DLA Piper polled together a multi-jurisdictional and multi expertise team to support Claret and Harbert on their negotiations with major development financial institutions and leading institutional investors, which resulted in a successful first closing of the Fund.

The DLA Piper Investment Funds team in Luxembourg was led by Country Managing Partner Catherine Pogorzelski supported by counsel Caroline Pimpaud, senior associate Marceau Visano and associate Roxana Stefanca. They were assisted by partner Jacques Wantz, associate Marie Germain (both Tax), partner Xavier Guzman, associate Yann Zellet, (both Finance & Projects), counsel Ambroise Foerster and associate Amin Bouazza (both Corporate).

The firm’s UK-based team included partners Andrew Wylie and Edward Griffiths, together with senior associate Edward Coates and associate Emily Garland, who advised on the UK corporate aspects of the management structure. Partner Michael McKee and senior associate Chris Whittaker advised on the UK regulatory aspects of the Fund.

UK Tax partner Richard Woolich and senior associate Michael Graham advised on the Fund’s UK carried interest and management fee structuring. Dublin-based partner Sean Murray and Frankfurt-based partner Marie-Theres Rämer and associate Eda Altinta also advised on tax matters.

Commenting, Catherine Pogorzelski, said: “We are proud to be able to bring our capabilities in investment funds and our debt sector expertise to advise Harbert and Claret on such a high-profile mandate, involving many jurisdictions and practices. It is great to see them providing growth financing to innovative businesses. We all very much enjoyed working on this great project.”

Johan Kampe, Claret Managing Partner, said: “We would like to thank all the investors, partners and DLA Piper team, who made this fund possible. We are looking forward to supporting innovative European businesses to help them reach their goals.”

David Bateman, Claret Managing Partner, said: “We are proud of what we have accomplished together and excited to take a next step with HEGC strategy and investment.”

About Claret

Between 2013 and October 2020, the team behind Claret Capital was responsible for raising and investing Harbert European Growth Capital Fund (HEGCF) I and II, providing growth funding to over 120 entrepreneurial businesses across Europe, with the Managing Partners of Claret Capital Partners (David Bateman and Johan Kampe) having provided growth financing to innovative businesses for more than 20 years. In October 2020, Claret Capital Partners was formed through a spin off from Harbert Management Corporation and the Claret Capital Partners team now manages in excess of EUR400m in assets originated by these funds.