Permira appoints Greater China chief

Following its massive investment in Macau casino and hotel operator Galaxy, the firm has hired a former Goldman banker in its recently established Hong Kong office to lead its efforts in Greater China.

Global buyout firm Permira has hired Henry Chen as the head of its operations in Greater China. He will be based out of Hong Kong and head the firm’s office there.

Chen will report to Guido Paolo Gamucci, chairman of Asia Pacific for Permira. Gamucci said that Chen’s sector expertise in consumer retail, industrials and healthcare are aligned with the firm’s core areas of expertise.

Chen previously spent nine years at Goldman Sachs, where he led and executed a number of transactions primarily in greater China. In his most recent role at the US investment bank, he served as the co-head of General Industrials Group for Asia ex-Japan. He was responsible for managing the investment banking coverage of the industrial, transportation, consumer retail and healthcare sectors. Prior to that, he was the chief operating officer of Corporate Finance at Goldman.

Thus far, Permira has made two investments in Asia. It acquired Arysta LifeScience, a Japanese agrochemical company from Olympus Capital Holdings Asia, a mid-market private equity firm, for Y250 billion ($2.3 billion; €1.5 billion) last year. Its other deal is an $840 million (€564 million) investment in Galaxy Entertainment Group, a Macau-based casino business.
Permira opened its Hong Kong office in June earlier this year, its second in Asia after Tokyo where it has had an office since 2005. The Hong Kong office now has a team of four professionals including Gamucci, Chen, James Burrell and Axel Hefer. Burrell and Hefer have moved to Hong Kong from Permira’s London and Frankfurt offices respectively.

The firm manages funds with a total commitment of approximately €22 billion.