PAI Partners

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PAI partners
Type Private Ownership
Industry Private Equity
Founded 1998
Headquarters Paris, France
Products Private equity funds
Total assets €11 billion[1]
Employees 50

PAI partners is a major European private equity house and is the leading private equity investor in the French market. It is one of the oldest firms in the sector with its origins dating back to Paribas Affaires Industrielles, the historical principal investment activity of Paribas, which started operations in 1872.

PAI manages and advises dedicated private equity funds with a total equity value of over €7 billion. Over the last decade, PAI has led 45 transactions in 8 European countries for a value of more than €30 billion.

PAI has 50 agents from 9 European countries and teams in Paris, Copenhagen, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Milan and Munich.


PAI's origins date back to Paribas Affaires Industrielles, the historical principal investment activity of Paribas, the pan-European merchant bank which merged with Banque Nationale de Paris in 1999. PAI was originally formed to manage the private equity investments of BNP Paribas. In 1993, Amaury de Seze joined Paribas Affaires Industrielles as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Under his leadership, PAI developed a strategy in private equity that capitalized on the team's familiarity with industrial sectors.

Paribas Affaires Industrielles led the €610 million buyout of Danone’s pasta and condiment unit in 1997, at that time the largest leveraged buyout ever completed in France. The following year, the firm finalized fundraising for its first third party investment fund, raising €650 million of investor commitments. PAI completed a full spinout from BNP in 2000 and the following year raised a new €1.8 billion private equity fund.

On May 6, 2008, PAI announced the final closing of its most recent private equity investment Fund, PAI Europe V, with €5.4 billion ($8.3 billion) of investor commitments.[2] [3][4] Prior to 1998, PAI invested exclusively on the balance sheet of BNP Paribas. PAI LBO Fund, established in 1998, was the first PAI investment vehicle managing third party capital.

In September 2009, PAI's CEO Dominique Megret stepped down in favor of Lionel Zinsou, who came from N.M. Rothschild. In response, PAI has offered investors an opportunity to reduce the size of PAI Europe V, raised in 2007 and 2008, by almost 40%.

Investment funds[edit]

Since 1998, PAI has raised four investment funds:

  • PAI LBO Fund, 1998 - €650 million
  • PAI Europe III, 2001 - €1.8 billion
  • PAI Europe IV, 2005 - €2.7 billion
  • PAI Europe V, 2008 - €2.7 billion


Historically, PAI managed Paribas' stakes in large food and consumer goods companies across Europe: Royal Canin (European leader in dry pet food), Diana Ingredients (natural food ingredients), Evialis (animal feed), Saupiquet (ready meals), LDC (premium poultry), Navidul (cured ham - Spain), SOS Arana (rice - Spain) and helped them consolidate their respective sector. PAI has completed a large number of leveraged buyouts of market leading European companies in recent years including several of the most significant in Europe. The most recent transactions in consumer goods and services, healthcare as well as general industrial companies are highlighted below:

External links[edit]