HM Capital exits EurotaxGlass in €480m secondary

London-based private equity firm Candover has purchased automotive data provider EurotaxGlass from HM Capital Partners, which changed its name from Hicks Muse Tate & Furst in March.

European buyout firm Candover has signed an agreement to acquire automotive data provider EurotaxGlass (ETG) from HM Capital Partners, formerly Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst.

Candover acquired ETG for an enterprise value of €480 million ($619 million), which included an undisclosed cash amount. The transaction is the second investment from the firm’s Candover 2005 Fund, which closed on €3.5 billion in November 2005.

Debt and mezzanine financing for the transaction has been arranged and underwritten by Bank of Scotland.

Candover was advised by Goldman Sachs International, LongAcre Partners, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte and Clifford Chance. HM Capital Partners and management were advised by JPMorgan.

HM Capital Partners formed ETG through the acquisitions of Glass’s Information Systems and Eurotax. Hicks Muse Tate & Furst acquired used car publisher Glass’s Information Systems from London-based private equity firm Duke Street Capital for £126 million in 1998. Two years later, the firm acquired Glass’s Swiss equivalent Eurotax in a £130 million transaction. In early 2005, EurotaxGlass was recapitalised, returning €109 million to shareholders.

ETG collects automotive data such as new car pricing, used car valuations, technical specifications, repair and maintenance parts lists and pricing, and technical reference materials for over 500,000 vehicle variants from 1,000 manufacturers.

Freienbach, Switzerland-based ETG provides its data to over 150,000 customers in 28 countries across Europe.

Texas, Dallas-based Hicks Muse Tate & Furst rebranded as HM Capital Partners in March of this year just over a year after the retirement of Tom Hicks, the firm’s co-founder. The senior investment team is made up of John Muse, Jack Furst, Peter Brodsky, Joe Colonnetta, Andrew Rosen, Edward Herring, Eric Lindberg and Jason Downie.

Earlier this month, Candover hired UK publisher Trinity Mirror’s director of strategic development Humphrey Cobbold to co-ordinate the firm’s deal sourcing activities. Cobbold will join Candover in September.