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CITIC Securities teams with Evercore to target China

The Chinese brokerage house and the US boutique investment bank are teaming up as CSI Partners to raise $500m for a China-focused growth capital fund. Former Bear Stearns Asia chairman Donald Tang will lead the firm, which will also advise on cross-border M&A.

New York-headquartered Evercore Partners and China’s CITIC Securities International have joint forces to launch CITIC Securities International Partners, a joint venture that will focus on cross-border M&A advisory and investment management. The stakes the two parties will hold in the joint venture have not been disclosed.

CITIC Securities International Partners will also manage a China-focused private equity business, Evercore said in a statement. The joint venture is forming a $500 million private equity fund focused on providing growth capital to Chinese companies.

CSI Capital will be a US dollar-denominated fund focusing on sectors such as resources, food, agriculture and healthcare, a CITIC spokeswoman said.

Donald Tang, the former chairman of Bear Stearns Asia and vice chairman of Bear Stearns, will head the firm as its chief executive officer. The cooperation with CITIC Securities International “facilitates our clients’ access to the Chinese market”, said Roger Altman, chairman and chief executive officer of Evercore Partners. The move is also aligned with the firm’s goal of globalising its business, Altman added.

Evercore Partners, which has additional offices in Los Angeles, San Francisco, London and Mexico, provides advisory services and has an investment management unit that includes institutional asset management, private equity and venture capital. In October 2008, the firm appointed former Perseus managing director Ray Newton as a senior managing director in its private equity group, Evercore Capital Partners.

CITIC Securities was among the first brokerage houses in China to be allowed investments in private equity in 2007. In 2008, the Chinese government reportedly rejected plans for a private equity fund backed by Starr International and China CITIC Securities. The Maurice Greenberg-led investment firm and CITIC Securities had planned to launch a 50-50 joint venture fund with an initial fund size of RMB1 billion.

The government subsequently allowed CITIC Securities to raise its own RMB 6 billion (€680 million; $877 million) fund, according to Reuters.

CITIC Securities International Partners will be based in Hong Kong.