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THCP announces investment in global strategic communications group SEC Newgate

19 January 2022 Investment Activity

Three Hills Capital Partners (“THCP” or the “Firm”) is pleased to announce that Three Hills Capital Solutions III (“THCS III” or the “Fund”) has entered into an agreement with SEC Newgate (“SEC”), a leading global strategic communications group, to support the delisting of the business from the London AIM and finance its ongoing M&A strategy. The Fund has committed c. EUR 50 million in preferred capital to the transaction, which is expected to close in Q1 2022.

Founded in 1989 and headquartered in Milan, SEC provides on a global scale data-driven, integrated services across communications, advocacy and research to corporates and institutions. The business operates with over 600 employees across 38 offices in 15 countries, servicing a large and diversified customer base, with multiple blue-chip global clients. SEC is ranked among the top 30 public relations (“PR”) firms globally.

The group is led by founder and CEO, Fiorenzo Tagliabue, who has successfully steered the business consolidation and expansion programme to date and is now looking to partner with THCP to help support SEC’s next phase of growth. The capital provided by THCS III will be used primarily to continue the rollout of SEC’s active M&A programme, with several attractive prospective opportunities already identified and in advanced discussions. 

THCP is excited to partner with SEC and work with Mr. Tagliabue to reinforce the business’ leadership position and further expand its global footprint. The transaction represents the latest commitment from THCP III and follows the Firm’s investment strategy of providing tailored capital solutions to high-quality European mid-market companies led by outstanding entrepreneurs.

Speaking of the transaction, Michele Prencipe, Partner and THCP Investment Committee member, said:

We are glad to partner with SEC Newgate, a fast-growing Group well positioned to further accelerate its growth trajectory, while seizing the vast opportunity set within the dynamic and high-potential strategic communication sector. What attracted us to SEC Newgate is the clear visibility of its growth prospects and the quality of its management across each local market.

Michele Prencipe, Partner and THCP Investment Committee member

Marco Anatriello, also Partner and THCP Investment Committee member, commented further: 

SEC Newgate has experienced solid growth in recent years, both organically and through acquisitions and we look forward to contribute our experience in supporting businesses to expand internationally, sourcing and executing M&A opportunities and delivering synergies and value for all the stakeholders. THCP is once again being chosen as the partner of choice of ambitious entrepreneurs with a clear vision on how to accelerate their company’s growth path.

Marco Anatriello, also Partner and THCP Investment Committee member

Fiorenzo Tagliabue, CEO of SEC, said:

Thanks to the financial and value-add resources provided by THCP, our objective to transform SEC Newgate into a relevant global player competing within the top 15 groups in our market becomes achievable. I have been working on this vision over the last few years with the full support of the Board and my closest collaborators. Our characteristics are strong European roots, clear positioning in corporate communications and a balanced footprint across key regions, which we expect will be improved within one year. Our Group’s identity has been forged by the quality of our top managers, who share significant entrepreneurial backgrounds and live with the same ethos. Along with their contributions, a decisive factor in the Group’s success has and will be the daily creative and passionate work of the many colleagues working across our 38 offices in five continents. A heartfelt thanks goes to every one of them.

Fiorenzo Tagliabue, CEO of SEC

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