About

We invest in European lower mid-market companies with ambitious growth strategies.

Founded in 2009, Columna Capital is an entrepreneurial investment firm with offices in London, Lugano and Luxembourg. Led by four partners, the Columna team consists of an engaged group of professionals that actively support ambitious management teams and entrepreneurs to drive organic growth and execute on consolidation opportunities. Typically, we invest in profitable companies with revenue of €15-100 million. We are a long term partner and our success is based on our ability to identify unique opportunities with growth potential where we aim to at least double the size of the business over the investment period.

We invest in European lower mid-market companies with ambitious growth strategies.

Founded in 2009, Columna Capital is an entrepreneurial investment firm with offices in London, Lugano and Luxembourg. Led by four partners, the Columna team consists of an engaged group of professionals that actively support ambitious management teams and entrepreneurs. We are a long term partner and our success is based on our ability to identify unique opportunities with growth potential where we aim to at least double the size of the business over the investment period.

Focus On Growth

We focus on accelerating the growth of the companies we back through active support and provision of capital.

Concentrated

We are a high conviction investor in fewer companies allowing us to dedicate more time to management to actively support growth.

Flexibility

We aim to be flexible and provide relevant solutions to all stakeholders to unlock the potential of the underlying business.

Relationship Driven

We aim to build credibility and establish strong working relationships. Managers are often our best source of reference.

Origination

Our expanding network of relationships and open mind allow us to identify interesting opportunities where proper engagement makes all the difference.

Alignment

We are principals not agents and are fully aligned with all stakeholders through a meaningful co-investment in the companies we invest in.

Focus

Investment Focus

We are passionate about building great businesses and aim to partner with high quality management and entrepreneurs to deliver transformational growth. We are looking for the following key features:

  • €15-100 million revenue and trading profitably
  • Potential for expansion or consolidation in the domestic market or internationally
  • Differentiated market positioning with attractive product or service offering
  • Ambitious managers that believe in their business

Buy & Build

We only invest with an identified strategic growth plan and assist management to accelerate growth through:

Buy

Strategic acquisitions rapidly transform a company’s footprint. By consolidating verticals, adding new geographies, clients and/or expanding the service offering, businesses can rapidly scale and consolidate market share. Together with management, Columna has to date successfully completed over 60 add-on acquisitions in Europe, the US, Africa and APAC for its portfolio companies.

Build

We are close to our businesses and actively support organic growth. This can involve working with management on, among other things, corporate strategy and planning, assisting them in recruiting key talent, raising finance, winning new business, establishing financial reporting tools or evaluating important investment decisions in infrastructure & technology.

Sectors

Columna invests across sectors and has developed specific expertise in the following sectors:

Regions

Columna invests in continental Europe with a specific focus on attractive companies in the following target markets:

Austria

France

Italy

Spain

Switzerland

Map

Responsible Investment Policy

PRI - Principles for Responsible Investment

Columna Capital is an entrepreneurial investment firm sponsoring European small to mid-market companies with growth potential.  Our strategy is to identify off-market opportunities and invest in a limited number of attractive companies as a long-term partner.  This strategy is underpinned by our values of honesty, integrity and transparency, which are core to our reputation.

We believe that taking an active management approach over longer hold periods and applying sound practices to environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) matters throughout the investment cycle can result in sustainable value creation.  In order to achieve this, we have developed a robust Responsible Investment System, which seeks to identify and manage ESG matters consistently and effectively, both in our own business and in our underlying portfolio companies.  To demonstrate our commitment to Responsible Investment, Columna became a signatory to the PRI (Principles for Responsible Investment) in 2017 and we have since integrated the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into the way we consider environmental, social and governance matters.

This Responsible Investment Policy outlines the key objectives, principles and values that form the basis of our Responsible Investment approach.  We believe this to be comprehensive but recognise that the wider Responsible Investment agenda continues to change.  To this end, we will review the document annually, and update it where necessary.

Overall objectives

As an investment firm, we aim to ensure our continued access to high quality investors, through delivering above-market sustainable returns and maintaining good relations with key investors over the longer-term.

Through our active management role, we try to maximise positive impacts of our investments (including creating commercial success), while avoiding or minimising material negative impacts and, where possible, helping realise social and environmental benefits.  At a minimum, our objective is to proactively and consistently comply with all relevant laws.  

We acknowledge climate change is a sustainability priority and therefore endeavour to conduct our business with consideration of the key aims of the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement.  In particular, we aim to incorporate climate risk into our investment criteria, including understanding how our activities and investments may contribute towards its causes, and determining any actions we can foster to mitigate such risks in a manner that is consistent with our investment objectives.  We support the recommendations made by the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), which we are progressively adopting while we identify and manage climate risk associated with our operations and those of our investees.

Values

In order to achieve our objectives, we have developed a set of ESG values.  These are consistent with our core business principles, and are embedded in Columna’s approach to investing:

  • Integrity - We are aware that reputation is vital to our business. A demonstrable commitment to honest and ethical practice in everything we do is essential to gain the trust of customers, partners and investors.  Our Responsible Investment System, and the associated training, makes it clear to all our employees how they need to behave in considering ESG issues.
  • Transparency – We believe transparency is the basis of a trustworthy relationship.  We are committed to using documented ESG practices in a systematic and effective way, in order to help us understand and manage ESG matters within our Portfolio Companies, as well as communicate opportunities and risks to our stakeholders, including our investors.
  • Reliability – We are integrating structured ESG criteria into our investment activities in a replicable way to ensure that our decision-making is robust.  We believe adopting this approach can have a positive impact on the performance of our portfolio investment companies making them, too, more reliable.
  • Proactiveness – Columna partners take board positions in all portfolio companies and we actively engage with company management to improve ESG performance of our businesses, as may be relevant.

Exclusion zones

Columna and its funds will not make investments related to the following sectors: adult entertainment, gambling, tobacco, alcohol, arms manufacturing, testing on live beings, unsustainable wildlife exploitation, subprime lending and the provision of retirement or sheltered housing for the elderly.

Management commitment

Columna’s management is committed to promoting and encouraging Responsible Investment practices, and to providing necessary resources to ensure appropriate implementation of the ESG commitments outlined in this document.

Disclosures under the EU Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation

Portfolio

No results could be found matching your preferences. Please alter your filtering selection.

Team

News

Charme Capital Partners SGR and Giuliano Caslini announce the establishment of an entrepreneurial partnership for the investment of Charme IV in Bianalisi, the leading provider of laboratory diagnostic services in Italy, together with the reinvestment by the current minority shareholder Columna Capital.

Bianalisi is one of the leading companies in the sector of laboratory diagnostics, outpatient services and diagnostic imaging in Italy. Founded in 1968 and based in Carate Brianza, the company was acquired in 2000 by the entrepreneur Giuliano Caslini who, over the last twenty years, has led a significant expansion plan in Italy, mainly through acquisitions, aimed at positioning Bianalisi among the leading players of the healthcare sector in Italy. In 2016, Columna Capital Fund I made its first investment in Bianalisi to support the founder’s sector consolidation strategy.

With more than 260 laboratories and over 50 outpatient clinics, Bianalisi receives almost 13,000 patients every day to its facilities spread across 9 Italian regions. More than 50,000 laboratory tests and over 2,000 specialist medical examinations are carried out daily by over 600 doctors in Bianalisi’s centres. In 2020 Bianalisi carried out over 16 million laboratory tests. Bianalisi also offers advanced diagnostic imaging services using the latest generation scanning equipment (CT and MRI). Its widespread presence in its regions, combined with a high quality and broad service offering, make Bianalisi a point of reference for its patients.

The partnership agreement envisages the entry of Charme Capital Partners SGR S.p.A. (pan-European private equity firm with a highly entrepreneurial matrix with offices in Milan, London and Madrid), through the newly established Charme IV fund, in the Bianalisi shareholding structure with a significant stake and in total continuation with the project led by the founder Giuliano Caslini. The growth strategy for the next few years will be based on the further delivery of the consolidation plan in Italy, together with the additional expansion of the services currently offered (also through the adoption of cutting-edge solutions in preventive genetic diagnostics and telemedicine) and further growth in corporate, outsourcing and insurance services.

Giuliano Caslini will continue to hold the role of Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, ensuring full entrepreneurial and management continuity. Charme will contribute to Bianalisi's development plan thanks to its consolidated experience in supporting the growth of exceptional companies in partnership with their respective founders. The recent acquisitions of Igenomix and Veritas, which have respectively become world leaders in reproductive genetic diagnostics and genome sequencing thanks to the industrial plans set up and supported by Charme, allowed the development of an important track record and know how in the healthcare sector that Charme will make available to Bianalisi. Columna Capital (a private equity investor with offices in the London, Luxembourg and Lugano), will join Giuliano Caslini and Charme with a minority re-investment. Closing is expected by the end of August and is subject to standard conditions for transactions of this nature.

Matteo di Montezemolo, CEO of the Charme Funds, commented: "It is with great pleasure that we announce today the establishment of Charme IV with the first investment in Italy in an Italian excellence such as Bianalisi in partnership with its founder, Giuliano Caslini confirming, once again, the strong entrepreneurial culture of the Charme Funds. Bianalisi represents a great investment opportunity for the new Charme IV fund in a leading company in its sector, which operates with an effective platform for the consolidation of the analysis and diagnostics laboratories market in Italy. We strongly appreciated Bianalisi's growth path, inspired by Giuliano Caslini's vision and, consistently with all the previous investments of the Charme Funds, we will also bring our active contribution to Bianalisi to continue on this path in the coming years. These are the distinctive elements that have always characterized the investment strategy of the Charme Funds and which are the basis of the strategic and operational support that we will give to Giuliano Caslini and Bianalisi to implement the ambitious development plan that we have shared".

Giuliano Caslini commented: "The partnership established with Charme represents a new relevant page in Bianalisi’s history and is the beginning of a new chapter which, in continuity, will lead the Bianalisi platform to grow and further strengthen to catch the significant opportunities for business development in the laboratory and diagnostics sector. I appreciated the strong business culture of Charme demonstrated in more than 15 years of activity by supporting the growth of important Italian companies, the deep respect for the history and entrepreneurial values of Bianalisi and also its consolidated network, fundamental factors that have inspired our partnership. Charme represents in fact the ideal partner to better face the next phase of development and the consolidation of the market foreseen for the next few years, at the base of Bianalisi's future success”.

Tommaso Beolchini, Founding Partner of Charme, commented: "Charme IV's investment in Bianalisi is totally consistent with the Charme Funds strategy of investing, in partnership with their respective founders, in excellent entrepreneurial companies with strong growth potential. The leadership and vision of Giuliano Caslini in Bianalisi are, in total continuity, the pillars of the significant organic and M&A growth envisaged in Bianalisi's new strategic plan".

Andrea Frecchiami, Partner of Columna Capital, commented: “We are extremely pleased to continue the partnership with Giuliano Caslini that began in 2016. We are glad to welcome a blue-chip investor like Charme, who will make a significant contribution to the success of the sector consolidation strategy. We strongly believe in Bianalisi and are convinced that this new partnership will deliver strong results, and for this reason Columna Capital is delighted to make a significant reinvestment".

Giuliano Caslini and Columna Capital were assisted by Rothschild & Co as financial advisor, by Orrick and LMS as legal advisor, and by PwC for market and business, accounting and financial vendor due diligence and tax aspects. Charme was assisted by Legance as legal advisor, by McKinsey for market and business due diligence, by EY for accounting and financial tax, HR and ESG due diligence, by Willis for insurance due diligence, by McDermott Will & Emery for regulatory aspects. Natixis, assisted by Ashurst, handled the financing of the acquisition as sole financing bank, while Charme availed of the EY debt advisory and Legance for the contractual aspects.

Contact

If you like what we do and are interested to work with us, please get in touch. We will respond.

LinkedIn

London

Columna Capital LLP
7 Cavendish Square
3rd Floor
London W1G 0PE

Columna Capital LLP
7 Cavendish Square, 3rd Floor, London W1G 0PE
View on Google Maps

Switzerland

Columna Capital Switzerland SAGL
Via San Salvatore 10
6900 Lugano – Paradiso
Switzerland

Columna Capital Switzerland SAGL
Via San Salvatore 10, 6900 Lugano – Paradiso, Switzerland
View on Google Maps

Luxembourg

Columna Capital Luxembourg S.à.r.l
2-8 Rue Julien Vesque
L-2668
Luxembourg

Columna Capital Luxembourg S.à.r.l
2-8 Rue Julien Vesque, L-2668, Luxembourg
View on Google Maps

{"title": "Columna Capital", "description": "", "mode": "ss", "targetId": "top"}