How Resource Partners made tracks in Eastern Europe
"We very much believed in our midcap, co-financing model in Eastern Europe, and we decided to give it a try at the worst possible moment"
As the global financial crisis engulfed Europe in early 2009, Polish private equity veterans Ryszard Wojtkowski, Aleksander Kacprzyk and Piotr Nocen were gasping from some seemingly bad choices of their own. In 2007, they had left top positions in established Central European private equity firms to join the Carlyle Group. The private equity giant had dangled a new Eastern European fund, with a €500 million ($617 million) target and the promise of an uncharacteristic -- for Carlyle, at least -- midmarket focus. Now, Carlyle was retrenching to more familiar territory. The three could either advise Carlyle's Western European, large-cap operation or fundraise for themselves in one of the most difficult environments imaginable.
They opted to go out on their own. "We very much believed in our midcap, co-financing model in Eastern Europe, and we decided to give it a try at the worst possible moment," recalls Wojtkowski in a telephone conversation from his office in Warsaw.
In accordance with an earlier agreement, we bought additional shares from the minority shareholders and increased our stake in Golpasz S.A. from 67 per cent to 85 per cent. We have been an investor in Golpasz S.A. since December 2015.
Kent Orrgren, CEO at World Class, performed at the European Health and Fitness Forum in Cologne. The 5th annual event brought together top experts from different sectors of the industry and over 400 delegates from 34 countries to discuss human capital in the European fitness sector.