Banks, Financial

Banking app targets millennials who want help budgeting

Graduate debt, rent and high living costs have made it hard for millennials to save for a house, a pension or even a holiday. For Ollie Purdue, a 23-year-old law graduate, this was reason enough to launch Loot, a banking app targeted at tech-dependent 20-somethings who want help to manage their money and avoid falling […]

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Eurozone inflation climbs to highest since April 2014

A welcome dose of good news before next week’s big European Central Bank meeting. Year on year inflation in the eurozone has climbed to its best rate since April 2014 this month, accelerating to 0.6 per cent from 0.5 per cent on the back of the rising cost of services and the fading effect of […]

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Wealth manager Brewin Dolphin hit by restructuring costs

Profits at wealth manager Brewin Dolphin were hit by restructuring costs as the company continued to shift its focus towards portfolio management. The FTSE 250 company reported pre-tax profits of £50.1m in the year to September 30, down 17.9 per cent from £61m the previous year. Finance director Andrew Westenberger said its 2015 figure was […]

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Travis Perkins and Polymetal to lose out in FTSE 100 reshuffle

Builders’ merchant Travis Perkins and mining company Polymetal face relegation from the FTSE 100 after their recent performances were hit by political events. The share price of Travis Perkins has dropped 29 per cent since the UK voted to leave the EU in June, as economic uncertainty has sparked concerns among some investors about the […]

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RBS share drop accelerates on stress test flop

Stressed. Shares in Royal Bank of Scotland have accelerated their losses this morning, falling over 4.5 per cent after the state-backed lender came in bottom of the heap in the Bank of England’s latest stress tests. RBS failed the toughest ever stress tests carried out by the BoE, with results this morning showing the lender’s […]

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Categorized | Financial

BBPI France invests €100m in China PE fund

Posted on June 30, 2014

President Xi Jinping's two-day visit to France©Reuters

French state-backed investor BPI France and China Development Bank have committed €100m each to back a private equity fund targeting medium sized companies in France and China.

The moves, which follow the state visit of President Xi Jinping in France in March, underscore Western governments’ courtship of China in an attempt to bolster jobs at home.

    The “Sino French Midcap Fund”, managed by Cathay Capital, a private equity group founded by Chinese national Mingpo Cai and Frenchman Edouard Moinet, has amassed a total of €460m so far, BPI France said on Monday. It has a final target of €500m.

    The fundraiser echoes recent initiatives in Europe. Russian Direct Investment Fund, the $10bn state-backed fund started by Russian president Vladimir Putin three years ago, set up a joint $2bn fund with China Investment Corp in 2012, and this year, it invested alongside the Chinese sovereign wealth fund in Sodrugestvo, a Russian oilseed processor.

    Two years ago, Belgian state-backed Federal Holding Company and CIC committed to a €200m fund managed by A Capital, a private equity group started by Frenchman Andre Loesekrug-Pietri, that aims to find European investment opportunities for Chinese investors. A Capital co-invested in Club Med alongside Chinese conglomerate Fosun.

    The French-Chinese fund “marks an important step forward in our ongoing collaboration with (Chinese Development Bank) and Cathay Capital in long-term development of French and Chinese companies,” Nicolas Dufourcq, Chairman of Bpifrance said in the statement.

    This is not the first fund Cathay is managing on behalf of the two investors. In 2012, they invested a €150m fund targeting small companies. The new fund would invest larger amounts in bigger companies through minority and majority stakes, it said.

    Cathay Capital, which mainly operates from Shanghai and Paris, was started in 2006 and targets French companies that want to expand in China, and vice versa. It has a mandate to spend about half its money in both countries. It will also look at deals in Germany after it opens an office in Frankfurt later this year. The team is among a handful of fund managers that have sought to exploit their political and business ties in Europe and China to raise money.

    This fund “heralds a significant new phase for Franco-Chinese co-operation in the area of private equity investment, especially in mid-cap companies, which we feel is a particularly promising segment presenting numerous opportunities”, Haibin Fan, president of China Development Bank said on Monday.