Placement agent CP Eaton has lost two senior capital raisers in Europe, Anne Gales and Alex Walker.
PERE has learned Gales departed the company yesterday while Walker left around two weeks ago for Hong Kong where he has joined a client.
Gales joined CP Eaton in 2003 and had raised private equity, real estate and infrastructure funds. One of her recent projects included ongoing work to raise €600 million in equity for first-time fund Moor Park Capital, a London-based property investment company.
Walker was a much more recent addition to the London office, having joined in February from the investment management division of property services firm DTZ. His role at CP Eaton was to concentrate on private equity real estate as well as other alternative asset class fund raises.
The departures coincide with restructuring of the firm in both Europe and Asia. Three weeks ago, the Connecticut-based company said Franklyn Chang, who has been a managing director in the London office for two years, had become head of European operations. Meanwhile, David Love has been appointed head of the Asia business.
The changes also come at an unprecedented time for the placement agent industry generally. Not only has it become significantly harder to raise capital as limited partners continue to face liquidity and over-allocation issues, but regulations are being proposed in the US following a pay-to-play scandal involving “fixers” or “introducers” and the New York Common Retirement Fund.
The proposed Securities and Exchange Commission rule, titled “Political Contributions by Certain Investment Advisers”, primarily sets forth rules against political contributions to officials with sway over public investing entities, such as the elected officials who oversee some US public pension funds. But it would also prevent placement agents from interacting with US public pensions.
The assault on the fundraising industry has spurred it to form a loose coalition to lobby lawmakers, a member of which is CP Eaton founder, Charles Eaton.
“We’re trying to encourage the politicians involved in these decisions to understand what a legitimate placement firm does, what our role is, our reason for existence, why we get paid, why investment firms hire placement agents instead of staffing up,” Eaton previously told PEO.
His son Jeffrey Eaton was reportedly made a director at the firm recently.
The company was not immediately available for comment.