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 and subprime lending.

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

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Team

News

Columna Capital and Giovanni Campus announce a new partnership with pan-European BPO insurance provider MSA Group and recovery management and back-office group Acclaims. Columna Capital’s investment values business in excess of Euro 120 million. Giovanni Campus and two key managers will significantly reinvest in the Group. Multi Serass Group is a leading full-service provider of Business Process Outsourcing to the Italian claims market and Acclaims, a leader in recoveries management and a back-office activities specialist. 

Multi Serass group (MSA Group) is a full-service software provider to the insurance industry. As the market leader in the Italian Claims Management sector, it provides clients with a series of additional services, including Portfolio Management and Network Management.

The MSA Group, founded in 1979 and headquartered in Milan, is the result of a successful story of expansion through the entire Claims Management value chain and beyond. The MSA Group manages both domestic and international claims across Italy and internationally, through offices located in Italy, France and Spain.

In 2011 Giovanni Campus established Acclaims, a separate business, focused on recoveries and back-office activities -claims First Notice of Loss (FNOL), recall, documents collection, audits and legal protection claims management, both for insurance groups and for the automotive market.

Mr Campus will continue as Chief Executive Officer of the new Group, ensuring full entrepreneurial and management continuity. At the same time, the two top managers, Fabio Piras and Alessandro Sebastiani, will reinvest in the new Group alongside Mr Campus, with the title of General Manager of MSA and CEO of Acclaims respectively.

Columna will enter the MSA Group and Acclaims shareholding structure with a significant stake and in full support of the existing management team led by the entrepreneur Giovanni Campus. Columna will contribute to the Group's development plan due to its proven track record in supporting the growth of exceptional companies in partnership with management. 

The MSA Group operates through 4 companies:

  • MSA - Multi Serass is the Italian motor claims third-party administrator (TPA) leader, providing a full-service Claims Management offering
  • N4C coordinates a network of claims experts, including loss adjusters, doctors, investigators and appraisal experts, providing both on-site and digital appraisal support
  • RipArte is an insurtech dedicated to body shops network, with over 350 affiliated body repair shops in Italy
  • Legalade is a legal firm specialised in insurance litigation covering the entire Italian Country

MSA Group’s leading position is supported by best-in-class proprietary technology, which enables process industrialisation and execution excellence. The Group manages over 100,000 claims per annum, serving a large and robust portfolio of clients, which includes 30+ insurance groups and large fleet managers.

The future growth strategy will be based on further expansion of services offered (including ASP/SaaS IT Claims Management solutions), driving consolidation of the Italian, French and Spanish TPA markets and building a strong presence in other European countries. 

Closing is expected by the end of April.

Giovanni Campus commented: "The partnership established with Columna Capital represents the beginning of a new chapter in MSA’s history, which, in full continuity, will further strengthen the Group to allow it to exploit significant business opportunities in the European Insurance Business Process Outsourcing market. I appreciate the strong entrepreneurial culture of Columna Capital, the deep respect for the history and values of the MSA Group and the potential synergies with its other investments in adjacent markets. These are the fundamental factors that have inspired our partnership. Columna represents the ideal partner to support the next phase of development and the expected consolidation of the market in the coming years, which are the foundations for the continued success of the new MSA Group”.

Andrea Frecchiami, Partner of Columna Capital, commented: "Over the last few years, Giovanni and his team have built MSA Group to be the leading tech-enabled full-service provider in the Italian claims management landscape. We are delighted to be working with the new MSA Group and we will leverage on our industry expertise and long-standing track record of supporting our portfolio companies in their expansion to further accelerate the Group’s growth in Italy and selected European countries”.  

Columna Capital was founded in 2009 and is a buy-and-build specialist, which typically invests €25-50 million in lower mid-market buyout and growth investments across France, Italy, Spain and Switzerland. Columna is sector-agnostic but focuses on industries where it has a strong DNA and the ability to add operational value-add including: (i) animal health, (ii) healthcare, (iii) business & consumer services, (iv) insurance services, (v) agri-food and (vi) technology. More information on Columna Capital can be found at: https://www.columnacapital.com/

MSA Group was assisted by Carlo Dawan, now head of Alantra’s investment banking division, as financial advisor, by Gatti Pavesi Bianchi Ludovici as legal advisor, by BCG for market and business vendor due diligence and by EY and Pirola for accounting, financial and tax due diligence. Columna Capital was assisted by LMS as legal advisor, by PwC for financial due diligence, by PwC TLS for tax due diligence, by Advant NCTM for deal structuring support and by Marsh for the W&I policy. Banca Ifis and Banco BPM, assisted by Simmons & Simmons, handled the financing of the acquisition as Co-Lead Arrangers, while Columna Capital was advised by LMS on the financing contractual aspects.

Contact

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

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London

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

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