3i to receive £77m in proceeds from refinancing of Aspen Pumps and distribution from Audley Travel

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3i-backed Aspen Pumps (“Aspen”) and Audley Travel (“Audley”) to return in aggregate £77m in cash to 3i Group plc (“3i Group”).

Aspen, the global leader in condensate pumps for air conditioning and refrigeration systems, has successfully completed a refinancing following the completion of the acquisition of Advanced Engineering, Aspen’s 5th bolt-on under 3i ownership.

3i Group plc will receive £52m from the transaction, representing more than 0.8x its original equity investment. This has been enabled by the significant growth and cash generation in the business, with revenues more than doubling since 3i’s investment in 2015. The refinancing ensures Aspen is well positioned to continue investing to further accelerate growth and deliver on its ambitious plans, both organically and through acquisitions, where it has a strong pipeline.

Audley, a leading provider of tailor-made experiential travel, has completed a £30m shareholder distribution funded by cash on balance sheet. 3i Group plc proceeds from this distribution are £25m. 3i invested in Audley in 2015 to build on its market-leading UK presence and support international growth, particularly in the US, where Audley has seen a 4x increase in bookings over the last 3 years.

Alan Giddins, Managing Partner and Head of Private Equity, commented:

“Aspen and Audley are both outstanding UK businesses, with leading market positions. Both companies have demonstrated strong organic earnings growth and cash conversion since our investments, which has enabled them to return cash to shareholders.



Download this press release   


For further information, contact: 

3i Group plc

Silvia Santoro

Shareholder enquiries

Tel: +44 20 7975 3258

Email: silvia.santoro@3i.com

Kathryn van der Kroft

Media enquiries

Tel: +44 20 7975 3021

Email: kathryn.vanderkroft@3i.com



Notes to editors:

About 3i Group

3i is a leading international investment manager focused on mid-market Private Equity and Infrastructure. Its core investment markets are northern Europe and North America. For further information, please visit: www.3i.com

About Aspen Pumps

Aspen Pumps is the global leader in the design, manufacture and assembly of condensate pumps focused on the air conditioning and refrigeration (“ACR”) sectors and is renowned for having the most reliable, installer friendly and innovative products. It also provides a range of market leading tools, rooftop mounting systems and accessories for ACR installers. For further information, please visit: https://www.aspenpumps.com

About Audley Travel

Audley is a leading provider of tailor-made experiential travel to over 80 destinations worldwide. Serving clients predominantly in the UK and US, Audley is renowned for its superior customer service and in-depth destination expertise delivered by its country specialists. For more information, please visit www.audleytravel.com

Categories: News


La Caisse invests CA$200 million in Québec technology company Plusgrade

TA associates

MONTRÉAL, Nov. 28, 2018 /PRNewswire/ – Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec announced that it is taking an equity interest totalling $200 million in Plusgrade, a leading provider of revenue solutions to the global travel industry. The transaction values Plusgrade at over CA$600 million.

With this backing, the company will continue to execute its expansion plan, which includes penetrating new international markets and expanding its suite of products. Since its founding in Montréal in 2009, Plusgrade has become one of the fastest growing technology companies, and was ranked in Deloitte’s Canadian Technology Fast 50 list in 2016 and 2017. Recently, it also received the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 Leadership award, which recognizes the innovation and leadership of companies at the forefront of the Canadian technology sector.

Led by a solid management team, Plusgrade is rapidly expanding its team across its Montréal headquarters and its New York and Singapore offices.

Over 70 travel companies worldwide, including Air Canada, Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines, trust Plusgrade to deliver key revenue streams via software solutions for optimizing their seat inventory. Its signature product provides travellers with an opportunity to bid on upgrades to a superior class of service.

“Plusgrade has a unique and innovative business model that is revolutionizing practices in its industry. Meeting an airline industry need, their products have been quickly marketed around the world in the last few years,” stated Mathieu Gauvin, Senior Vice-President, Québec, at la Caisse. “This investment is aligned with our strategy of supporting the growth of Québec companies that prioritize innovation to drive their international development.”

In the context of this transaction, la Caisse acquired a portion of the shares held by TA Associates, a leading global growth private equity firm that will continue to be a major shareholder, alongside the management team and other investors.

“We are very excited to welcome la Caisse as our new institutional investment partner as we accelerate our growth into new markets and verticals,” said Ken Harris, Founder and CEO, Plusgrade. “The confidence that la Caisse and TA Associates have shown in Plusgrade is a testament to the value that our talented team is delivering across our global footprint of travel suppliers. We look forward to la Caisse joining our Board and providing valuable guidance as we pursue our strategic growth initiatives.”

Morgan Stanley Canada Limited served as financial advisor and Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP served as legal counsel to Plusgrade. Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP served as legal counsel to la Caisse.

Plusgrade is an award-winning technology company at the forefront of ancillary revenue and merchandising in the global travel industry. As the market-leading provider in its category of upsell solutions, Plusgrade is generating billions of dollars of new revenue opportunity and powering leading travel suppliers in more than 50 countries. Plusgrade is headquartered in Montréal with offices in New York and Singapore. For more information, please visit www.plusgrade.com.

Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (la Caisse) is a long-term institutional investor that manages funds primarily for public and parapublic pension and insurance plans. As at June 30, 2018, it held CA$308.3 billion in net assets. As one of Canada’s leading institutional fund managers, la Caisse invests globally in major financial markets, private equity, infrastructure, real estate and private debt. For more information, visit cdpq.com, follow us on Twitter @LaCDPQ or consult our Facebook or LinkedIn pages.

Now in its 50th year, TA Associates is one of the largest and most experienced global growth private equity firms. Focused on five target industries – technology, healthcare, financial services, consumer and business services – TA invests in profitable, growing companies with opportunities for sustained growth, and has invested in nearly 500 companies around the world. Investing as either a majority or minority investor, TA employs a long-term approach, utilizing its strategic resources to help management teams build lasting value in growth companies. TA has raised $24 billion in capital since its founding in 1968 and is committing to new investments at the pace of $1.5 to $2 billion per year. The firm’s more than 85 investment professionals are based in BostonMenlo ParkLondonMumbai and Hong Kong. More information about TA Associates can be found at www.ta.com.

SOURCE Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec

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Categories: News


Vacation Rental Management Platform Hostaway Raises €1.25 million


Hostaway has successfully gained a major foothold in the rapidly growing vacation rentals market, alongside its partners – Booking.com, AirBnb, and Expedia to name a few – who are streamlining the entire industry. Hostaway enables short-term property managers through an integrated SaaS system that has the ability to manage operations and increase their revenues, by integrating into all major channels (Airbnb, Booking.com, HomeAway, and more).

“Our customers are professionals whose traditional business models have been to rent out dozens of homes worldwide. Today, it is no longer enough to manage your properties on the one sales channel and everybody’s business model is to be present everywhere, all the time. Which is exactly what Hostaway offers,” says Marcus Räder, the CEO and co-founder at Hostaway.

Since its launch in 2015, Hostaway has grown to a global team of 30 members in Barcelona, Toronto, Helsinki, Melbourne, and Kiev. The team itself is made up of nearly 20 nationalities, a focus on gender equality, all the while speaking over 10 languages. Hostaway is currently looking for talent for their Sales, Customer Success, Engineering, and Marketing teams across Toronto, Barcelona and Helsinki, hoping to double their team by Jan 2019.

“Our focus on diversity and global culture as key values, is ultimately what has helped us achieve the success we have today,” says co-founder Mikko Nurminen. Elaborating on Hostaway’s culture he says “From the very beginning, we have made diversity, culture, and internationalism the core values to drive our business model. We were able to create high-functioning communication processes, cover all time zones to match our customers’ needs, and find the most talented people from all around the world.” In September 2018, Hostaway took all 30 of its team members to Barcelona for a 7-day company meetup.

The short-term rentals market continues to see rapid and steady growth, with a projected market valuation of $190 billion by 2021. Hostaway has their gears set on becoming the industry’s largest player.

Backed by one of Finland’s leading venture capital firms in the B2B software space, Vendep saw the value and potential in the Hostaway team, immediately deciding to get involved in their rapid growth and development.

“We were very impressed by Hostaway’s quick growth during the course of this year,” says Hannu Kytölä from Vendep Capital. “This success was achieved by building a seasoned team delivering world-class customer service on an easy-to-use channel management platform, which delivered what it promised: hassle-free growth for its customers.Vendep Capital is excited to back the Hostaway team on their journey to success and growth ahead.”

Since September 2018, Hostaway has been growing out of the top incubator in North America, the DMZ.

“DMZ has been a massive help for us. Their mentorship and network makes it easier for us to attract talent and accelerate our growth. The Toronto tech scene is booming and we’re right at the crux of this momentum with the rest of the big tech-leagues,” says Marcus Räder.

Hostaway has collected a total of EUR 2.4 million in funding from investors and Business Finland and has several successful Finnish serial entrepreneurs.

For additional information:

Marcus Räder, co-founder, CEO
+1 416 821 3601
Mikko Nurminen, co-founder
+358 40 701 3135

Team photo and management team Saber Kordestanchi, Mikko Nurminen, Alexandra Logushova, Robert Hoogendam ja Marcus Räder

Hostaway is an enterprise solution for managing short-term rentals. Hostaway offers all the tools a property manager needs to grow their business, reach the largest sales channels, delegate tasks, and optimize their performance in one place. For more information, visit www.hostaway.com

Vendep Capital Fund II invests mainly in Finnish startups offering software to B2B customers. Founded in April 2017, the target size of the fund is €40 million. The funds have been raised from Finnish private and institutional investors such as Tesi (Finnish Industry Investment Ltd) and The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra. The fund may make investments alone or as part of a syndicate. www.vendep.com

Categories: News


AURELIUS subisidiary GHOTEL HOTEL & LIVING expands with four more locations

Aurelius Capital

  • Add-on acquisition of new hotels in economically strong locations contributes approx. 25 percent revenue boost
  • GHOTEL hotel & living as franchisee for InterContinental Hotels Group
  • Potential for synergies with existing portfolio and further milestone in medium-term expansion strategy

Munich, 31 August 2018 – Hotel operator GHOTEL hotel & living (www.ghotel.de), a subsidiary of AURELIUS Equity Opportunities SE & Co. KGaA (ISIN DE000A0JK2A8), has acquired three hotels in Düsseldorf, Gütersloh, Salzburg (Austria) in operation, and one in Osnabrück, currently still under construction with its opening planned for spring 2019, as an add-on acquisition of Arcadia Hotelbetriebs GmbH. The hotels will be operated under franchise for the InterContinental Hotels Group with the brands Holiday Inn, and Holiday Inn Express in Gütersloh. This will boost GHOTEL hotel & living’s revenue by approximately 25 percent.

The new hotels will enable GHOTEL to expand its network with attractive locations in high-growth regions. All of the hotels have enjoyed strong growth rates in recent years and continue to show good potential, especially in the business customer segment. The hotel in Gütersloh is considered the leading hotel in its location, while the modern hotel in Düsseldorf opened recently, in 2016, and is centrally located downtown. GHOTEL expects considerable synergy potential on the basis of incorporating these new houses in its own hotel network. Cooperation with the InterContinental Hotels Group opens further potential for expansion.

“We are delighted with this further growth step as a new franchise partner of the InterContinental Hotels Group” said Jens Lehmann, CEO of GHOTEL hotel & living. “We have signed a multi-development agreement which sets joint growth targets for the coming years.”

In the first half of 2018, the GHOTEL Group had already acquired three new locations, the nestor brand hotels in Ludwigsburg and Neckarsulm and a downtown hotel in Göttingen. GHOTEL hotel & living will continue its strong growth through 2020 with the opening of five further locations.


About GHOTEL hotel & living

GHOTEL hotel & living is an expanding hotel and apartment building chain with 12 properties in several cities in Germany including Kiel, Hannover, Göttingen, Koblenz, Munich, Würzburg, Essen, Ludwigsburg and Neckarsulm. The business hotels with modern conference rooms are marketed under the GHOTEL hotel & living and nestor Hotels brands as well as the franchise brands Accor and InterContinental Hotels Group. Under the GHOTEL living brand, GHOTEL hotel & living also operates “temporary residence” apartment buildings in Bonn and Munich. GHOTEL hotel & living is headquartered in Bonn and belongs to AURELIUS Group since December 2006.

Categories: News


KKR to Acquire The Bay Club Company


Landmark California company bridges gap between fitness and hospitality

NEW YORK & SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)– KKR, a leading global investment firm, and The Bay Club Company (“Bay Club”), a premier active lifestyle and hospitality company, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement under which KKR will acquire Bay Club from York Capital Management and minority investors, including JMA Ventures and Roxborough Group. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 1977, Bay Club operates a collection of active lifestyle campuses, welcoming more than 50,000 members throughout California. The clubs are designed with innovative amenities to support the company’s focus on Fitness, Sports, Family and Hospitality.

Bay Club is recognized as the pioneer of the urban sports resort. Over the past several years, Bay Club has assembled an experienced management team—a blend of fitness, hospitality, technology, and finance veterans. Under the direction of this team, Bay Club was given the opportunity to evolve beyond the fitness industry. As a result, the Company entered the realm of hospitality by grouping complementary properties into campuses and offering its members a range of high-end lifestyle amenities typically only found at country clubs and luxury resorts.

“At Bay Club, we are proud to have created California’s leading active lifestyle community. In partnering with KKR, we are excited to build even further on what we’ve accomplished thus far and bring our unique offering to even more communities across the country,” said Matthew Stevens, President and CEO of Bay Club.

“Bay Club’s pioneering and differentiated model is one of the few scaled platforms in a large and highly fragmented health and wellness industry, where members can find options that meet all of their – and their families’ – needs,” said Nate Taylor, KKR Member and Head of KKR’s Americas Consumer Retail team. “We’re thrilled to be partnering with Matthew and the rest of Bay Club’s management team.”

KKR is making the investment through separately managed accounts and its balance sheet.

Bay Club is being advised by Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC as lead financial advisor, North Point Advisors LLC as co-financial advisor, and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, LLP as legal advisors. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett is serving as legal advisor to KKR.

About Bay Club
Headquartered in San Francisco, California, The Bay Club Company is an active lifestyle and hospitality company with a network of experiential campuses that welcome more than 50,000 members. The company operates across seven California campuses in the San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles and San Diego markets, employing more than 4,000 people. For more information on The Bay Club Company, please visit BayClubs.com or its blog, OneLombard.com. The Bay Club Company is also on Facebook and Instagram.

About KKR
KKR is a leading global investment firm that manages multiple alternative asset classes, including private equity, energy, infrastructure, real estate and credit, with strategic manager partnerships that manage hedge funds. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns for its fund investors by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people, and driving growth and value creation with KKR portfolio companies. KKR invests its own capital alongside the capital it manages for fund investors and provides financing solutions and investment opportunities through its capital markets business. References to KKR’s investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds. For additional information about KKR & Co. Inc. (NYSE: KKR), please visit KKR’s website at www.kkr.com and on Twitter @KKR_Co.

About York Capital Management
York Capital Management is a global private investment firm that was established in 1991. The firm manages approximately $18 billion in assets across public and private investment strategies, including its private equity platform, the York Special Opportunities Fund, which owns Bay Club. York Capital employs approximately 60 investment professionals and 200 total employees globally, located primarily in New York, London, and Hong Kong.

Bay Club:
Annie Appel, 415-901-9351
Kristi Huller or Cara Major, 212-750-8300
York Capital Management:
Gasthalter & Co. for York Capital Management
Nathaniel Garnick/Kevin Fitzgerald, 212-257-4170

Source: KKR

Categories: News


GCP Hospitality, a member of Gaw Capital Partners, expands its footprint in Europe through a joint venture with Omega Capital by acquiring Hospes Hotel Group in Spain

Gaw Capital

July 25, 2018, Hong Kong

– Real estate private equity firm Gaw Capital Partners today announced that the firm, through its European Hospitality Fund I managed by GCP Hospitality, acquired a 50% stake in Spain’s leading boutique hotel brand, Hospes Hotel Group, of which its total asset is valued at €125 million, forming a joint venture with a Spanish investment company, Omega Capital.

Hospes Hotel Group is a highly respected brand in Spain with 10 properties. The group is recognized as a highly acclaimed brand and operator within the luxury and heritage boutique hotel segment.

Each hotel has been crafted in an artisan fashion, combining elements of heritage, design, local textures and technology together.

Hospes’ luxury boutique hotels are situated in various prime locations across Spain, including Madrid, Alicante, Granada, Valencia, Mallorca, Córdoba, Seville, Cáceres and Salamanca. The properties are in close proximity to some of Spain’s most prominent historical sites, each designed by respected and renowned architects to create their own unique atmosphere and style. Their facilities, including bars and restaurants, wellness centers and spas, have received 5-star ratings.

Goodwin Gaw, Chairman and Managing Principal of Gaw Capital Partners, said, “We are delighted to form a joint venture with Omega Capital through our European Hospitality Fund I managed by GCP Hospitality to acquire a 50% stake in Hospes Hotel Group. Entering the Spanish market with one of Spain’s most distinguished entrepreneurs marks an important milestone for Gaw Capital Partners and its hospitality platform, GCP Hospitality, as we look to expand our presence in Europe and tap the abundant opportunities in one of the world’s most popular tourism markets. We will further expand the Hospes brand by opening more properties in tourist areas and strategic cities within Spain and Southern Europe.”

Christophe Vielle, CEO & Co-Founder of GCP Hospitality, said, “We are thrilled to expand our hotel portfolio to Europe. The acquisition of Hospes Hotel Group is a testament to GCP Hospitality’s strong track record of successfully launching and operating top-of-the-range hotels and hospitality brands. With a very positive outlook for the continent’s tourism industry, we are actively exploring ways to expand our portfolio in Europe. We will leverage the reputation of Hospes Hotel Group as well as our international network to increase the brand’s footprint.”

Categories: News


KKR-backed Travelopia Announces a Major Investment in Croatia


Partnership with Croatia’s Brodosplit to build a new expedition ship by 2020

Croatia, 12 June 2018 – KKR-backed Travelopia, one of the world’s leading experiential travel groups, has signed an agreement with Croatia’s Brodosplit to build a new 200 passenger expedition ship designed for operation in the polar region. The ship will offer an unparalleled and innovative expeditionary capability and provide unique travel experiences for Travelopia’s customers.

Croatia is an investment destination for KKR as a leading, global investor. The agreement by Travelopia demonstrates KKR’s ongoing support of Croatian businesses and contribution towards creating employment in the region. KKR has earlier obtained full local regulatory approval to invest, through its portfolio company United Group, in Nova TV. Through this transaction, United Group will be able to support local production capabilities and step up investments into own content production in Croatia.


About KKR

KKR is a leading global investment firm that manages multiple alternative asset classes, including private equity, energy, infrastructure, real estate and credit, with strategic manager partnerships that manage hedge funds. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns for its fund investors by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people, and driving growth and value creation with KKR portfolio companies. KKR invests its own capital alongside the capital it manages for fund investors and provides financing solutions and investment opportunities through its capital markets business. References to KKR’s investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds. For additional information about KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE: KKR), please visit KKR’s website at www.kkr.com and on Twitter @KKR_Co.

About Travelopia:

Travelopia is one of the world’s leading specialist travel groups. A pioneer in the experiential travel sector with a portfolio consisting of more than 50 independently operated brands, most of which are leaders in their sector. From sailing adventures, safaris and sports tours, to Arctic expeditions, each brand is diverse and focused on creating unforgettable experiences for customers across the world.



Media contacts
Alastair Elwen
+44 207 251 3801


Categories: News


Eurazeo PME is set to become the new majority shareholder of 2RH Group.


Eurazeo PME is set to become the new majority shareholder of 2RH Group (Shark, Bering, Segura and Cairn brands ), one of Europe’s leading suppliers of protective motorcycle and outdoor sports equipment.

Eurazeo PME announces the signing of an acquisition agreement, under the terms of which it will become the new reference shareholder of 2RH group, a longside management and Naxicap Partners. The goal shared by Eurazeo PME and its senior management is to step up the company’s growth trajectory by strengthening its leading position in France and Europe, in particular thanks to external growth operations.

Eurazeo PME will thus take over from Naxicap Partners, the majority shareholder since July 2015. The operation is due to be completed in July 2018. Founded in 2008 out of the Shark brand, the 2RH group designs and manufactures protective motorcycle and winter sports equipment.

In line with the company’s innovative strategy and spirit, the equipment meets the highest standards in terms of performance and safety. 2RH has a workforce of over 600 and has three production sites in France and abroad (Portugal, Thailand). The group currently generates over half of its sales outside France, principally in Europe, the world’s No. 1 market, where it is one of the industry’s leaders.

With a turnover of €100 million in 2017 and an organic growth of more than 10% per year since 2011, the group has already made two acquisitions –Trophy (Bering, Segura) in 2011 and Marlybag (Cairn) in 2016, enabling it to diversify its offering while reinforcing its distribution networks.

Eurazeo PME is keen to support 2RH’s management, led by Patrick François, its Chairman & CEO, in consolidating its leading position in the motorbike protective equipment sector, but also in the sports sector, through both organic growth and acquisitions. Eurazeo PME will be placing its international business network –with its offices, notably in the United States and Brazil – and its corporate expertise (digital, CSR, etc.) at the disposal of the group’s operational excellence strategy.

Erwann Le Ligné, Managing Director-Member of the Eurazeo PME Executive Board:

“We are very enthusiastic about the management team and the quality of growth of a group with solid fundamentals.

Eurazeo PME wishes to lend its support to the 2RH Group in its ambition to double in size over the next five years by supporting innovation and stepping up international development, notably through external growth operations.”

Patrick François, Chairman & CEO of 2RH Group:

“We are delighted by the prospect of Eurazeo PME, a long-standing shareholder, accompanying us in stepping up our development. The presence of a professional investor such as Eurazeo PME at our side gives us the confidence to envisage new external European, and even global, growth opportunities.”

Angèle Faugier, Member of the Executive Board – Naxicap Partners: “We are delighted to be able to continue the journey alongside senior management and to accompany Eurazeo PME in this new, highly ambitious development phase. After doubling in size between 2015 and 2018, we were keen to lend our support to this next stage, which, furthermore, we shall be doing a longside a new majority shareholder̵ Eurazeo PME.”


About Eurazeo PME

Eurazeo PME is an investment firm and subsidiary of Eurazeo dedicated to majority investments in French SMEs with a value of less than €200 million. Eurazeo PME acts as a long-term professional shareholder, providing its portfolio companies with all the financial, organisational, and human resources they need for a sustained transformation, and guides them in creating sustained and, thus, responsible growth. This commitment is formalised and deployed through a CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policy.

In 2017 Eurazeo PME generated consolidated a net income of €1.1 billion and supports the development of Dessange International, Léon de Bruxelles, Péters Surgical, Vignal Lighting Group, Redspher, MK Direct Group, Orolia, Odealim, Smile and In’Tech Medical, which are solidly positioned on their markets and led by experienced management teams.


Categories: News


Fortino Capital’s portfolio company MobileXpense launches new app and announces new CEO

Fortino Capital

Six months after the 20 million euro investment by Fortino Capital, the Brussels software company MobileXpense is upping its game. It has released a new app SpendCatcher and introduces its upgraded solution for travel and expense management. To secure this sustainable growth, Pieter Geeraerts joins MobileXpense as the new CEO.

MobileXpense is one of the very first Belgian SaaS (Software as a Service) companies and serves renowned multinational companies such as Bridgestone, UCB and Burger King. The core strength of its services is the intelligent integration of specific country and company regulations and policies in the solutions . This guarantee of compliance differentiates the Belgian SaaS-provider from other international players and is one of the main reasons for its success today. In December 2017, Fortino Capital invested 20 million euros to further develop the products and services and help MobileXpense to grow its business and optimize its solutions.

MobileXpense has launched a new mobile app SpendCatcher which “reads” receipts and automatically creates an expense in the MobileXpense system, allowing users to smoothly manage their expenses on the go and in a few clicks. It will also introduce a completely revamped web version of its solution, upgrading the user experience and comfort.

This growth of MobileXpense also entails a change in leadership. Pieter Geeraerts becomes the new CEO, replacing co-founder Xavier Deleval as head of the company. Deleval will stay involved as product specialist and as a board member. Matthias Vandepitte, Partner at Fortino Capital, says they are  eager to work with the the new CEO: “We firmly believe that MobileXpense has the capacity to become an even bigger player as many large corporates still rely on pen and paper or Excel sheets to process employee expenses.  Pieter Geeraert’s sector knowledge and commercial skills will be pivotal to realize this growth story.”

Pieter Geeraerts about the new solutions and the future of MobileXpense : “MobileXpense is a fast growing customer-centric company with a great solution, addressing not only the financial aspects of travel and expense management but also  compliance, data privacy, end user experience and more. I am excited to join the company at such a pivotal moment with the launch of the new solution, which will be the cornerstone for the continued growth of MobileXpense and an even higher customer satisfaction.”

Pieter Geeraerts has a proven track record in managing growth with a focus on large enterprise customers. In his most recent jobs, he has realised significant growth for Basware in the enterprise software sector as country manager for Benelux & France. Most recently, Pieter has been active in the payments sector, optimising the sales organisation and processes at Worldline, first as head of Sales for Benelux and later on at a global level as head of Global Bid Management & Strategic Deals.

Categories: News


ACTIVA CAPITAL invests in BE RELAX, global operator of AIRPORT SPAS, to accelerate its development

Activa Capital

Through a dedicated capital increase with Activa Capital, Be Relax, the global operator of well-being and beauty services at airports, has raised up to €20m. The transaction will help accelerate the pace of Be Relax spa openings at both existing airport locations and at new airports.
Founded in 2004 by Nicolas and Frédéric Briest, Be Relax now operates 52 airport spas in 11 countries across Europe, the US, the Middle East and Asia. The group employs nearly 500 staff worldwide.
Be Relax has experienced strong growth in recent years, particularly in the US and the Middle East, winning numerous tenders, including the airports of Dallas, Philadelphia and, very recently, Muscat. Over the last few years, Be Relax has become the number one global operator of airport spas.

Activa Capital’s investment project, alongside Nicolas and Frédéric Briest, is to contribute to the acceleration of openings through an ambitious plan of 10 new spas per year, while supporting the founders as they implement their new marketing concept, gradually rolling it out across all points of sale.

“I am delighted with this partnership with Activa Capital. Their renowned experience in supporting external growth strategy will be key in carrying out potential build-ups for Be Relax,” Nicolas Briest, co-founder of Be Relax.
“Ultimately, we want to strengthen our global leadership, becoming number one in the US market. This development will involve the opening of many new spas, ” Frédéric Briest, co-founder of Be Relax.
For Christophe Parier and Alexandre Masson, Partners at Activa Capital: “We were impressed by the energy of the Be Relax founders and their ability to grow simultaneously across the US, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Airports are increasingly looking to offer relaxation and well-being services to passengers to relieve the stress of travel. This is a key moment in the development of Be Relax, which is structuring its shareholder base in order to accelerate the pace of its openings.”

Deal participants
Be Relax: Frédéric Briest, Nicolas Briest
Activa Capital: Christophe Parier, Alexandre Masson, Frédéric Singer
Buyer strategic due diligence: Roland Berger (Gaëlle de la Fosse, Olivier Hombreux, Michael Cosentino)
Buyer financial Due Diligence: 8 Advisory (Justin Welstead, Daniel Parsons, Baptiste Piasentin)
Buyer legal adviser: Hogan Lovells (Stéphane Huten, Paul Leroy, Alexandre Jeannerot)
Seller legal adviser: Stehlin & Associés (Svetlana Tokoucheva)
Seller corporate finance: Neuflize OBC Corporate Finance (Jean-Christophe Liard, Caroline Brun)

About Be Relax
Established Paris in 2004 with the opening of well-being spas at Roissy Charles de Gaulle airport, Be Relax has become in a few years a world leader in airport spas. Be Relax spas are regularly ranked among the best in the world of travel retail. Be Relax’s mission is to offer a special moment of relaxation to airport passengers. Taking advantage of its unique expertise in stress caused by air travel, Be Relax is innovating and developing a line of accessories in well-being and travel under its own brand name. These products are now distributed in more than 200 stores and boutiques around the world. Since its first spa at Paris Charles-de-Gaulle airport, the company has launched successively in Europe, the US and the Middle East. It now has 52 locations and employs more than 500 employees. The iconic Roissy Charles de Gaulle site employs more than 60 people on permanent contracts in 8 spas. To learn more about Be Relax, visit berelax.com.

About Activa Capital
Activa Capital is a leading French mid-market private equity firm. Activa Capital manages over €500m of private equity funds on behalf of a wide range of institutional investors. Activa Capital partners with ambitious mid-sized French companies, valued at €20m to €200m, seeking to accelerate their growth and their international footprint. Learn more about Activa Capital at activacapital.com or on Twitter @activacapital.

Activa Capital Media Contacts Steele & Holt Media Contacts Be Relax Media Contacts
North America:
Alexandre Masson Daphné Claude Adeline Moya
Partner VP, Business Development
+33 1 43 12 50 12 +33 6 66 58 81 92 +1 978 408 3065 alexandre.masson@activacapital.com daphne@steeleandholt.com a.moya@berelax.com
Europe & Middle-East:
Christelle Piatto Claire Guermond Virginie Desquatrevaux
Communications Manager Marketing Director
+33 1 43 12 50 12 +33 6 31 92 22 82 +33 6 68 11 03 78
christelle.piatto@activacapital.com claire@steeleandholt.com v.desquatrevaux@berelax.com


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