Careers at Permira
Permira is a private equity firm, which provides advisory and investment services. It invests across funds focused on multiple sectors, with a view to providing sustainable and reliable returns for its clients.
Permira operates primarily through five business segments organised by target sector:
- Consumer, comprising the Company’s investment in consumer-focused companies, such as Hugo Boss and Dr. Martens;
- Financial Services, comprising the Company’s investments across financial services markets;
- Healthcare, comprising the Company’s investments in healthcare businesses, including biotechnology companies and medical equipment manufacturers;
- Industrials, comprising the Company’s investments in industrial companies, including manufacturing businesses and natural resources companies; and
- Technology, comprising the Company’s investments across the technology sector.
Permira was founded in 1985 by Nicholas Ferguson, initially operating a number of businesses across multiple geographic regions under the umbrella of the Schroder Ventures brand. In 1996 the Company’s UK, France, Germany and Italy units merged their operations to form Schroder Ventures Europe, and a year later launched the Company’s first Pan-European fund.
Permira rebranded in 2001, taking on its current name. The Company has since expanded its operations internationally, growing to become a leading name in the private equity investment sector. Permira currently employs an international workforce of more than 200 employees, including regional teams of investment professionals, and operates through a network of 14 offices, including a presence in Germany, the UK, Luxembourg, Spain, Italy, France, Sweden, the US, Hong Kong, Korea, China, and Japan.
Permira currently has €31 billion in committed capital and is currently investing €5.3 billion. Its portfolio includes investments in businesses across the consumer, healthcare, industrial, technology, and financial services sectors, including in BFY, BakerCorp, Cortefiel, Informatica, John Masters Organics, and Pantheon.
Business model of Permira
Permira’s manages a portfolio of private equity funds, in which a range of clients are invested. The Company categorises its investors as follows:
- Pension funds, which comprise around 60% of the Company’s investor base;
- Other financial institutions, including banks and financial services providers, which comprise around 30% of the Company’s investor base; and
- Investment managers, including independent investment professionals, which comprise the remaining 10% of the Company’s investor base.
The Company’s Permira Debt Managers unit specifically seek to provide credit solutions to mid-sized European businesses across all sectors.
Despite being based in Europe, the largest portion of Permira’s investors relates to clients in North America, which make up around 43% of the Company’s total investors. Approximately 31% of the Company’s investors are from Europe, while 25% are based in Asia. The Company also attracts investors from other regions, including the Middle East, but these investors do not represent a significant customer segment.
Permira provides value to its customers in the following ways:
- Its technical expertise and industry experience, with the Company employing specialist staff across its operating segments, with dedicated teams of investment professionals for each of its target sectors, led by a team of experienced industry executives;
- Its management of its investor relationships, with the Company seeking to establish and maintain close and direct relationships with its investors, keeping investors informed through regular conference calls and webcasts, as well as providing quarterly, rather than half-yearly, valuations;
- Its track record of delivering returns for its investors, with the Company having provided reliable returns to its clients over a period of years, establishing a reputation as an effective and efficient investment provider; and
- Its responsible investment strategy, with the Company focusing on the sustainability and integrity of its investments, with a view to providing lasting value to its investors.
Permira operates a website at www.permira.com, through which it provides information to existing and prospective clients on its various services, portfolio companies, and investment strategy. The Company, however, does not operate an online sales channel.
Permira provides its services to clients directly through its dedicated team of investment and private equity professionals. The Company’s investment personnel are organised across the Company’s target sectors, as well as being distributed geographically, operating out of the Company’s international network of offices. This includes offices across Europe, including in Frankfurt, Milan, Paris, London, and Madrid; in the US, in New York and Menlo Park; and across Asia, in Hong Kong, Seoul, Shanghai, and Tokyo.
Permira does not provide any products or services to its customers on a self-service basis. The seeks instead to develop close relationships with its clients, with whom its investment professionals consult on a regular basis. The Company works closely with its clients, discussing the best course of action with regard to the individual circumstances of each investor, with a view to securing longstanding relationships and recurring business, as well as sustainable solutions for its clients.
Permira provides ongoing advisory services to its clients, offering support through its team of investment professionals. Customers are able to contact the Company’s various offices directly over the phone or via an online contact form, and can find contact details for the Company’s specific departments, where necessary. Permira keeps its individual clients updated with fund performance on a regular basis, providing quarterly valuations. It also provides more general information and insight through market analysis papers published for each of its target sectors.
Additionally, customers are able to stay up to date with Permira’s activities, and interact with the Company directly, through its social media accounts, including with Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.
Permira operates as an investment holding firm. Through its subsidiaries, the Company advises and invests private equity funds, focusing on long-term investments across multiple sectors and international markets.
Permira operates five investment units, divided by target sector: Consumer, Financial Services, Healthcare, Industrials, and Technology. Permira’s portfolio of companies, includes Atrium Innovations, Akindo Sushiro, Arcaplanet, Telepizza, CABB, BakerCorp, Netafim, GFKL and Lowell, JRP Group, and Tilney Bestinvest.
Permira also operates a debt management unit, which seeks to provide credit solutions to mid-sized businesses across all sectors, principally in Europe.
Permira partners with a range of companies in its pursuit of effective investments for its clients. These partners include:
- Investment and Portfolio Partners, comprising a range of investment companies, private equity firms, and pension funds with which the Company co-invests in certain companies, or provided joint advisory services; and
- Service Partners, comprising a range of service providers to which the Company outsources non-core administrative and other functions.
In 2014 Permira collaborated with Canadian pension funds Fonds de solidarité des travailleurs du Québec and Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec to buy Atrium Innovations. Permira also partnered with News Corp to buy NDS Group, which it ultimately sold to Cisco Systems for around $4 billion. More recently, Permira announced that a company backed by the Company’s funds had agreed to acquire a majority stake in John Masters Organics, owner of premium organic personal care brand John Masters Organics.
Permira’s key resources are its funds, its communications and technology infrastructure, its partnerships, its service and distribution channels, and its personnel.
The Company’s private equity funds are key to its activities, as are its teams of investment professionals, whose expertise is the driving force behind the Company’s ability to provide a reliable and effective service.
Permira incurs costs in relation to the management of its funds and the execution of various market transactions, the payment of professional fees – including legal and advisory fees, the operation and maintenance of its technology and communications infrastructure, the management of its partnerships, the operation of its service and distribution channels – notably its network of international offices, and the retention of its personnel.
Permira accrues costs in relation to the payment of salaries and benefits to its workforce of more than 200 employees, as in the form of occupancy fees associated with the operation of its network of 14 offices across Europe, Asia, and the US.
Permira generates revenue through the provision of advisory and investment services. This includes revenue derived from the collection of advisory and management fees, the accrual of interest, and the growth of its investments.
Permira is not a publicly-listed company and as such is not obliged to publish its financial records. Accordingly, Permira’s revenue figures are not recorded on the Company’s website or in the press.
info: Kurt (“Bjorklund”) has served as Co-Managing Partner at Permira since 2008. Bjorklund first joined Permira in 1996. He was named a partner at the Company in 2001, and from 2003 to 2008 served as Head of the Company’s Nordic office. Prior to joining Permira, Bjorklund held a variety of roles. In his early career he worked as an information technology reseller in Finland. He later joined The Boston Consulting Group, where he served as a consultant for several years. He has also held a number of directorships and board positions, including spells as Chairman of Nordic Telephone Company Administration, and a director of ThoughtWorks Inc. Bjorklund holds a master's degree in Business Administration from INSEAD, and a bachelor’s degree in Economics from SSEBA, Finland. He has also completed graduate studies at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York.
info: Tom (“Lister”) has been Co-Managing Partner at Permira since 2008. He also serves as a member of the Company’s Board of Directors. Lister first joined Permira in 2005, serving as a partner within the Company’s New York office. He was later named Head of the New York Office, and served as a Member of the Financing Group. Lister began his career in 1986 at Morgan Stanley, where he served in the Mergers and Acquisitions Department for a number of years. He left Morgan Stanley in 1993, joining Forstmann Little and Company as an associate. He went on to become a partner of the firm in 1996, and in 1997 was named General Partner of the Company. Lister holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration, and bachelor’s degrees in Chemistry and Political Science from Duke University.
info: Richard (“Sanders”) has been a partner at Permira since 1999, when he joined the Company’s London Office. He spent his first nine years with the Company in London, before moving to the US in 2008 to help set up the Company’s Menlo Park Office. He has since returned to the UK to work in Permira’s London Office. Prior to joining Permira, Sanders worked for a number of years at Morgan Stanley, principally working within the Company’s Mergers and Acquisition and High Yield Capital Markets divisions. Sanders holds a master’s degree in Classics from the University of Oxford, and a master’s degree in Business Administration from Stanford University, where he was a Fulbright Scholar.
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