The liquidity crisis and the slowdown have forced the Europe based private equity fund Candover to put a halt to its investment activities. The fund has said that it will suspend all its investment activities for the next six months and instead explore strategic options to stabilise its financial position, reports UK's newspaper Independent.

But this will not impact the fund's plans to raise a new Asia fund. To a query by VCCircle, Harsha Raghavan, Managing Director, Candover India, said: "Candover Asia will be initiating the process of raising a dedicated Candover Asia Fund sometime over the course of this year. We had always planned to raise a dedicated Asia investing vehicle and that plan remains unchanged."

However, no new investments will be made until October by Candover, and investors would only pay fees on portfolio company Expro International, the oil services group which was bought by Candover for £1.6 billion last April, said Independent.

About a month back, Candover had said that its listed arm would either put its Asian and Eastern European operations on a self financing basis or would close them down.

The fund has also said that its team in Asia was looking at raising a dedicated fund in order to self-finance their operations. It also added that the operations would have to cease if they were unable to raise the funds.

Candover has already exited its investment in luxury yacht maker Ferretti, which it bought for £1.5 billion in 2006. Its other portfolio companies include gaming group Gala and oil and gas-services provider Expro. Candover Investments' net asset value was 1,026 pence as of Dec. 31, 2008, and the company has not made any new investments or realisations since then. 


Candover, which is advised by Merrill Lynch and Lexicon Partners, had also reportedly held discussions with rivals including Blackstone for a sellout, which are understood to have collapsed. The group, however, said it may enter into preliminary discussions "with selected parties in due course", reports Independent.


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