Evolution Backs Another New Manager

Evolution Managers Capital (EMC), an investor in emerging private equity firms, has made its second fund investment to date by backing Greens Farms Capital.

EMC was formed in October 2019 by Chicago-based HC Private Investments (HCPI) and Boston-based family office Landon Capital Partners (LCP), to provide financial backing and support to lower-middle market private equity managers. EMC commits up to $50 million in equity in each firm and partners with select family offices to make direct co-investments – on a deal by deal basis – in transactions originated by the private equity firms in its portfolio. EMC is led by John Kelly and Matthew Moran, both are managing partners at HCPI, and Chris Sullivan, a managing partner at LCP.

Westport, Connecticut-based Greens Farms Capital, founded by Michael Kessler, makes control and non-control investments of $10 million to $20 million in companies with EBITDA ranging from $2 million to $5 million. Sectors of interest include business services; software and technology; media and marketing services; and manufacturing.

“I am thrilled to work with the Evolution Managers Capital team, whose backing will enable us to partner with talented management teams and provide them with board-level guidance from experienced investment professionals and successful entrepreneurs,” said Mr. Kessler. “We intend to focus on companies that could benefit from creating scale economies from add-on acquisitions or making additional investments to enhance operating performance. Additionally, we are able to offer more patient capital not subject to the investment horizon limitations of the traditional private equity model.”

Prior to forming Greens Farms in January 2020, Mr. Kessler was with The Riverside Company from 2013 to 2019 as a partner and founding member of the Riverside Strategic Capital Fund which makes non-control investments in companies with $5 million to $40 million of EBITDA. Earlier, from 2003 to 2013, he was a managing director at Veronis Suhler Stevenson where he was active making control investments in business services and business information companies.

“We are excited to partner with Michael Kessler, a highly experienced and successful investor, to support the launch of Greens Farms Capital,” said Messrs. Kelly, Moran, and Sullivan in a released statement. “We have invested successfully alongside Michael in the past and admired his approach to working closely with management teams to enhance growth and profitability. We look forward to bringing the full resources of EMC to bear in supporting the launch and growth of Greens Farms Capital and are actively seeking additional talented and emerging investment managers to add to our platform.”

In March 2020, EMC’s made its first investment in Conanicut Capital. The Boston-based firm is led by Jared Paquette and makes control and growth investments in business services companies with $3 million to $15 million of EBITDA.

HCPI makes investments between $5 million and $30 million in consumer and industrial manufacturing companies ranging in size from $10 million to $100 million in enterprise value. HCPI’s investments can take the form of control equity, growth equity, structured equity, and junior debt. HCPI was formed in June 2017 by HC Technologies, a Chicago-based financial trading firm, and is led by its founder and chairman Joseph Niciforo, and managing partners John Kelly and Matthew Moran. Mr. Kelly was previously a Vice President with The Tokarz Group Advisers and Mr. Moran was a Vice President at Wind Point Partners.

Landon Capital Partners is the direct private equity investment group of the Landon family and invests in lower middle-market companies that have from $5 million to $20 million of EBITDA. Sectors of interest include healthcare services, business services, niche manufacturing, food, and beverage. The firm was founded in 2015 and has offices in Boston and London.

Private Equity Professional | July 2, 2020

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