Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Private Equity Market Governance

The event was followed by a steady evolution for twenty years, but no relation to the recent explosion. This momentum is the result of a combination of several positive key factors. The first of these is an abundance of liquidity in financial markets. Attracted by high yields (15-16% on average), liquidity providers (banks and insurance institutions, pension funds and private wealth) do not hesitate to fill the capital market allows investors to raise funds more increasingly important. Direct consequence, the number of LBOs has increased but more importantly, the number of very large transactions (over one billion Euros) also increased from 23 in 2006 in France. SMEs are no longer the only target of LBO financing transactions, large groups with a strong interest in the funds management, particularly in terms of activity. So after the frenzy of acquisitions recorded in recent years, these groups now intends to liquidate their related activities generate higher margins.

Then, the low cost of debt, due to low interest rates, gives montages leveraged a significant advantage over other types of acquisition financing transactions. They are based mainly on debt financing of target companies, the current environment when they are particularly favorable to more easily identify a margin between the cost of debt and the return on assets under management. However, this cannot alone suffice to explain the strong growth in activity. Private equity has above all recognition in the governance model in place in companies come under LBO financing. These companies are generally better managed and better valued, and even if some failures can be reported (ten more than 200 annual operations in France), we must recognize that the default rate of the sector is quite low and few are examples of clashes in the area of corporate governance.

Governance is indeed one of the key parameters of a company came under LBO financing. To repay debt must quickly generate cash flow. However, it is recognized that improving the economic value of a target company depends, in large part by the optimization model that will be applied. Therefore, LBO funds agree, from acquisition, to establish a mode of corporate governance more efficient and take the form of a greater focus, accountability of management (generally a shareholder as a result of the operation) and optimization of financial assets.