Advent International has established an office in Prague to be led by Chris Mruck. PEO reported just two weeks ago that the firm is planning to open a Ukraine office in September. The Prague office will expand on Advent’s existing central European bases in Budapest, Bucharest and Warsaw.
Mruck has been at Advent since 1997 and has been involved in several of Advent’s more high profile central European deals – including the sale of Bulgarian telecoms company BTC to AIG Capital Partners for €1 billion ($1.3 billion) – the region’s biggest deal to date.
The Prague team includes Michal Aron, who has been at Advent since 2006, and Milan Kulich, who will join the firm this summer. Aron previously worked at Ticketpro, a central European ticketing company, while Kulich was formerly at Deloitte central Europe.
The region has been attracting considerable amounts of private equity capital. 25 private equity funds raised $9.5 billion for investment in the region in 2006, and seven funds have raised $10.6 billion to date in 2007, according to Private Equity Intelligence.
Advent’s central European investments include Terapia, Romania’s biggest generic pharmaceuticals manufacturer, which was sold to Ranbaxy in 2006 for $324 million (€241 million), and Unmas, a Turkish packaged bread manufacturer, which was sold to Doruk and Star Foods in 2006.
Advent has raised $10 billion in private equity capital and completed more than 200 deals since its inception in 1984.